The Consequences of Obsession
by deathlydragon

Pairing: Draco Malfoy/Rodolphus Lestrange, Draco Malfoy/Sirius Black
Dub-con, Non-con, Violence
Word Count: ~28.000

Genre(s): Drama, Romance
Not Canon
Other characters:
Bellatrix, Avery, Snape, Remus

Draco Malfoy kept his obsession a secret, but when he is eventually confronted with it, he needs to decide how important it really is for him.

Author's Notes: At the beginning I wanted this to take place after OOTP, with Sirius not being dead, but for the sake of no underage participants I just jumped a few years into the future. A future full of war and a constantly blushing Draco.

Disclaimer: This story is based on characters and situations created and owned by JK Rowling, various publishers including but not limited to Bloomsbury Books, Scholastic Books and Raincoast Books, and Warner Bros., Inc. No money is being made and no copyright or trademark infringement is intended.

Considering whether his actions were right or wrong was never something Rodolphus Lestrange cared about. Not when it came to himself. But he found himself wondering what his dear little obsession would think was right and wrong. Was it wrong to watch a boy, whose father he could be? Was it wrong to care about his nephew so deeply? Even though they were not related he could still remember the big smile of the blond-haired baby with those huge, adorable grey eyes. He had silently promised to protect this innocence although he was not protecting anything else, but with his wife Bellatrix saying something about whether the Cruciatus curse would make that baby scream properly one just had to think about protecting little Draco Malfoy.

He was not so little anymore but his eyes still grew big when he visibly thought that it was very wrong of his aunt to lick over the shell of his ear as she whispered advice about dark magic in it. And Rodolphus wondered if Draco thought it was wrong that the jealousy made his uncle almost smash his glass against the wall, because if Draco did not care about right or wrong then Rodolphus would not give a damn about what the whole world might think and just take what was supposed to be his.

And how much he wanted Draco to be his, especially when he was doing this thing with his spoon in the mornings, licking it like he had never tasted anything better than those overly sugary cornflakes he always ate. Rodolphus had tried them and had made Draco laugh when he had grimaced because of the sweetness. Seeing Draco laughing had become a rare thing, especially since Draco’s fool of a father had managed to get a free ticket to Azkaban. Draco thought he had to be a miniature version of Lucius now, but whenever he was alone he simply staggered through the corridors of Malfoy Manor, obviously needing support but always pushing everyone away who wanted to grant his silent wish.

“Avery, give that back!” Draco shrieked suddenly, ripping Rodolphus out of his thoughts. Since the war had become more serious, Malfoy Manor had turned into a sort of harbourage for the Death Eaters. And since Lucius was not around anymore, they behaved like barbarians, but what really annoyed Rodolphus was that they teased his poor Draco. Of course, it was cute when Draco tried to take a stand against the teasing, because his cheeks went all red and he balled his small hands angrily to fists at his side, looking so adorable that nobody could give him peace.

“Ah, no, no...” Avery turned his back to Draco, who sat next to him at the long table and had just lost his dessert to the elder Death Eater. “It’s mine now. You owe me something for throwing that Cruciatus at me today.”

Draco huffed and folded his arms in front of his chest, pouting. “That’s not fair. Aunt Bellatrix told me to,” he muttered and turned back to his still not empty plate. He did not eat enough because those rude bastards just took everything he liked and that was actually not very much. Draco was pretty picky when it came to food.

“You can have mine,” Rodolphus said and shoved his dessert to Draco, who sat opposite from him. “I don’t really have a sweet tooth.”

Sadly, Draco shook his head slightly and stood up, not even gifting Rodolphus a smile. “I’m going upstairs.” He rather floated upstairs. Rodolphus watched him, not showing his worry on his face, but that did not change the fact that he was worried. Bellatrix was so eager in her attempt to make a proper Death Eater out of Draco that she might kill him in the end; if not with her so-called lessons then personally, because she was getting annoyed. Draco had always been easy to distract, but lately he seemed to be more and more absent, staring out of windows for hours and sighing in a very obvious way. He might just be missing Lucius, but Rodolphus was pretty sure that his nephew’s problems were those of a normal teenager. Love.

“I’m going after him,” Rodolphus muttered, giving Avery a sign that he was allowed to take another dessert. Greedy bastard.

“Have fun,” Avery called and most of the men who heard him started to whistle, until Rodolphus threw them a harsh look. The deadly silence immediately broke after he left the room and he followed Draco with the echo of roaring laughter in his head, wishing that he had not deserved to be made fun of, because he silently hoped that he was Draco’s love interest. He would definitely give him enough reasons to stare sighing out of a window, worrying about right or wrong.


After Sirius Black was somehow responsible for Lucius Malfoy’s imprisonment in Azkaban, Draco’s crush on him should vanish into thin air, but as he drooled on his collected newspaper articles since he was thirteen it was difficult to stop and just throw all the pictures and stuff away. He tried. He definitely tried. Draco walked back and forth between his secret hiding place for his Sirius-Black-collection and the bin in the opposite corner of the room for what felt like the hundredth time. But he was unable to throw all the papers away.

Clinging to his favourite picture of the former prisoner of Azkaban, Draco slumped down onto the edge of the bed. He remembered how he once believed that Sirius Black was really the Dark Lord’s right-hand man, just to find out that the bastard was St. Potter’s godfather. Back then he had first tried to get rid of his weird obsession of the mysterious, fascinating man, but it was already too late, because his crush had poisoned his entire body so that he was not able to hate a bloody Gryffindor even if he sent his father to prison. Again and again. And actually, it was Lucius own fault if he was not strong enough to defend himself against the Order of the Phoenix.

His father seemed to always end up as the scapegoat. Lucius did fail several times in the tasks which the Dark Lord had given to him, but Draco now knew that it was more of a tactic to let Lucius suffer in Azkaban. As long as someone was punished, the stupid people were lulled into a helpless safety, literally clinging to it, because otherwise they would break because of fear and paranoia.

But why exactly this made everything easier for them, Draco did not understand. Sometimes, he believed that the Dark Lord just thrived on seeing him suffer, but on the other hand he had long ago understood that he was not that important. He was too weak to deserve the attention of the Dark Lord and those pictures were a proof for his weakness, but they also were a proven remedy against his sadness.

Why should he throw away the only thing that offered him some moments of happiness? It did not make him a traitor that he had a crush on the enemy, for it was not deep enough. He just yearned for broad shoulders to lean against, especially when his father left him alone again, and Sirius Black’s shoulders seemed to be predestined for that.

Draco sighed as he looked down on the smaller version of the wanted poster. Maybe Black had not looked that handsome back when he was thirteen but then it was his reputation that had been so mesmerising. Pulling another, newer picture in front of the older one, Draco smiled softly. Now it was definitely Black’s handsomeness and charisma that kept Draco from throwing his obsession away.

“I should hate you,” Draco muttered, running his fingertip over the cheerfully waving man on the picture taken right after his acquittal. “But who could hate this smile?”

“Talking to yourself, Draco?” a voice drawled from the door and made Draco jump. Hastily, he put the papers back into his secret hiding place – more precisely the bottom drawer of his bedside table.

Clearing his throat, Draco leant his back against the bedside table and smiled at his uncle. “You’re used to that, since you’ve been married to Aunt Bellatrix for quite a while now,” he said, pressing himself closer against the bedside table when Rodolphus Lestrange entered the room, the bottom drawer already in the focus of his eyes.

“Speaking of my wife,” Rodolphus folded his arms in front of his chest, stopping right in front of Draco but not shoving him away to see what he was hiding. “She’s disappointed – to be exact, she turned her room in ashes because she thinks that you’re not taking your lessons seriously. I don’t think that you’re really a waste of time, Draco, so I thought I just ask what’s wrong.”

“Nothing,” Draco replied, annoyed. “Maybe you should ask Avery. How am I supposed to practise the Cruciatus curse if he’s always running away?”

Rodolphus brushed a loose strand of dark hair out of his face and looked around, taking in the sight of Draco’s room and hiding his small smile. “You could practice with... what do I know? A rabbit.”

“Yes, torture an innocent, little rabbit – that’s just senseless,” Draco retorted, narrowing his eyes slightly when Rodolphus looked down at him. The height difference was not that big as a few years ago but it still annoyed Draco that any of those stupid Death Eaters was looking down at him like he was a bloody girl. He was the man of the house now with his father gone, he was giving most of them a place to sleep and food – they should be thankful but instead they still treated him like some child. “I mean, at least I have a reason to torture Avery. He stole my dessert and now I want revenge.”

Rodolphus laughed softly. In comparison to his wife, his laughter did not sound mad and it was never loud enough to make Draco’s ears ring. But just like Aunt Bellatrix, Rodolphus was still treating him like a child, reaching out a hand and ruffling his hair. Draco would not dare to shove Bellatrix away; Rodolphus did not become furious when Draco slapped his wrist.

“Revenge is a good beginning, Draco, but you have to keep in mind not to show your aunt that you’d have trouble with that poor rabbit. You know how Bellatrix can be. One glimpse of compassion on your pretty face and she freaks out,” Rodolphus said and walked towards Draco’s bed, sitting down without asking for permission. He still looked around and Draco became unsure if this was the first time his uncle was in his room.

“But I’m not her torture machine, anyway,” Draco said and just ignored that Rodolphus patted next to him in an obvious attempt for Draco to sit down. He still had to hide his dirty little secret. “I don’t care if she just wants to spend more time with me. Other aunts take their nephews to Florean Fortescue’s Ice-Cream Parlour and don’t bring Florean Fortescue to their home, lock him up in the cellar and force him to make ice-cream until his hands bleed... I’m even glad that Avery always steals my dessert...”

“Oh, come on, Draco. She’s trying,” Rodolphus said and reached out, grabbing Draco’s arm and pulling him roughly next to him. Draco threw a nervous look towards his bedside table but relaxed a little when Rodolphus did not show any interest in his secrets anymore. “She just wants to show you that she cares about you. Her methods are a little... weird sometimes, but...”

“Weird? If that’s her way to show me her affection I don’t want to know what her wedding present for you was,” Draco mumbled, crossing his arms in front of his stomach defensively while Rodolphus scratched the back of his head.

“Yeah, that’s a difficult topic anyway. I think she likes you more than me,” Rodolphus admitted, waved dismissively before Draco could ask the wrong questions and turned to face him, placing a hand on Draco’s shoulder. “I just want you to know that she’ll stop liking you if you don’t show some interest in your lessons. She was so impressed by how fast and eagerly you learned Occlumency – I never managed that, by the way – and you’re a little down, lately. Because of your father?”

“No!” Draco shrugged Rodolphus’ hand off, a little taken aback by being comforted by his uncle. He was unsure what could be behind this. Rodolphus was certainly not doing this because he was sympathetic to Draco. His uncle liked him, Draco knew that, but it just felt wrong that Rodolphus seemed worried. “He’ll be back sooner or later, I’m sure.”

“Hmm...” Once again, Rodolphus placed a hand on Draco’s shoulder, drumming his fingertips lightly but constantly until Draco stiffened slightly. “Love problems?”

Draco’s eyes widened in surprise, but before he looked at his uncle, he forced himself to look cold, hoping that he was able to control himself well enough not to blush. “What makes you think such nonsense?” He blinked because his eyes immediately wanted to look at his bedside table.

“If it’s not your father it must be some other distracting teenager thoughts,” Rodolphus explained.

“I’m not a bloody teenager! I’m of age,” Draco snapped and shoved Rodolphus away, hastily rising to his feet and turning his back to his uncle to hide his burning cheeks. Embarrassment was certainly his least favourite emotion and he had not felt it very often in his life, but that was probably the reason why he did not have complete control over this feeling now. “Maybe I’m just tired of everybody’s still treating me like a child.”

“And you’re hiding a picture of you struggling with your adolescence in the drawer?” Rodolphus chuckled when Draco looked at him, jaw clenched and hands balled to fists at his sides.

“Did you sniff around in my stuff?” Draco hissed and dug his fingernails deep into the flesh of his hands when Rodolphus laughed again.

“No, no...” Still laughing, Rodolphus shook his head and eventually took a deep breath. “There are very few things you could want to hide so badly. A really deep crush is a weakness in Lucius’ opinion, if I remember right.”

“It’s not a crush!” Draco wished he could do something to stop the fiery heat in his cheeks that certainly gave the truth away. “It’s not...”

“Even if you didn’t blush so obviously, you already told me indirectly that I was right when you asked me if I sniffed around in your stuff,” Rodolphus said, sounding utterly amused and the corner of his lips tiled more and more upwards with every second he looked at Draco. “Want to talk to me or do I really need to open that drawer?” He pointed at the bedside table and Draco stepped in front of it right away. “Quite protective, little one. Only makes me more curious.”

“You don’t need to play the father for me. Mine’s coming back pretty soon, thank you very much,” Draco fired back, maybe a little too heated, but he was embarrassed and needed to cover that with a different emotion, not caring which one.

Rodolphus raised his hands in defence. “I’d never even think about that,” he said and stood up with a sigh. “You know, since Bellatrix isn’t in the mood to deal with you for the next couple of days, I just guess we’ll spend some time together... practising, satisfying my curiosity.” Waving at Draco, Rodolphus headed for the door.

“I won’t tell you,” Draco called, making Rodolphus turn on the spot. “And I don’t want to practise anything with you. There’s nothing you could teach me.”

“Well...” Rodolphus folded his arms in front of his chest once more; he seemed to always do that if he was obviously thinking. “I was always very good with the Imperius curse. For a sensible young man like you, that is probably a better way to start with the Unforgivable Curses. Mulciber would teach you that, as he’s the specialist, but he’s sadly not offering distance learning from Azkaban.”

“Sensible?” Draco’s hands hurt and he was sure that his fingernails had already left crescent marks in his palm. “I am not sensible. How dare you calling me sensible, Rodolphus Lestrange?”

“You can’t torture a bloody rabbit without bursting into tears. If that’s not sensible, then tell me what it is!” Rodolphus waited a moment for an answer, then that bloody smirk appeared on his lips and Draco turned away with a low growl. “Compassion might be a weakness, Draco, but love will be the death of you. I have to make sure that you’ll keep that in mind.”

“Isn’t that a sign of compassion, too?” Draco said in a whisper, so that Rodolphus did not hear him, especially when he opened the door with a shrieking creak. He needed to tell the house-elves to take care of the hinges.

“Did you say something?” Rodolphus asked and Draco shook his head, looking over his shoulder. Rodolphus shrugged, slamming the door shut again. “You have to talk sooner or later, Draco. I can makeyou talk, you know that.”

“What’s it your interested in? Gossip? We have a bloody war going on. You should concentrate on that,” Draco said, focusing his eyes on the lamp on his bedside table, so that it was hopefully not too obvious what he wanted to protect. Rodolphus most certainly already knew it anyway, but that would not keep Draco from trying.

The approaching footsteps from behind echoed from the high walls and made Draco gulp hard. He moved closer to the bedside table when the warmth of another body was tangible behind him. Of course, Rodolphus could easily make him talk, but that would not be as fun as making Draco talk because he wanted to.

“I just want to make sure that you don’t choose the wrong person,” Rodolphus said, far too close to Draco’s ear. He had to lean down to bring his lips so close that they were touching Draco’s skin and Rodolphus took advantage of his position to reach for the drawer – the wrong one, but not very far away from the right one.

“Don’t...” Draco grabbed Rodolphus’ wrist, knowing that his uncle would only find incriminating material. He better prevent every attempt that might result in closer examination. “Never, ever come between a man and his obsession.”

Rodolphus’ chuckle hit Draco’s throat and he wondered if his uncle should still be standing so close to him. Maybe if he just let go of Rodolphus’ wrist... but then he would risk revealing his secret and he was definitely not ready for this.

“Don’t you have to become a man before you acquire an obsession?” Rodolphus moved the wrist Draco was holding closer to the smaller boy’s stomach, placing his hand not far away from Draco’s hip.

“Uncle Rodolphus, what are you doing?” Draco asked very slowly so that Rodolphus clearly understood how weird it was to wrap his arm around him like that. He already thought that it was weird that Aunt Bellatrix touched him almost everywhere whenever she had the opportunity, so maybe that behaviour was just as normal for her husband. Draco had to admit that he felt more comfortable with the arm of a strong, tall man wrapped supportingly around him than with Bellatrix’ long, sharp fingernails scratching over and digging into his flesh.

“My dear nephew, what are you thinking am I doing?” Rodolphus whispered right into Draco’s ear and his voice so husky, sounding exactly like Draco always imagined Sirius Black’s voice. A voice for which he would walk through fire just to hear one time. But for the moment the resemblance to his imagination was enough to make him shiver.

“Trying to seduce my secret out of me?” Draco turned his head over his shoulder and tried to look as cold as he always pretended to be, but it was really hard to stay in control of his emotions in this position – well, until Rodolphus laughed very softly but highly amused again, which made Draco almost angry. Angry because he embarrassed himself again.

“Oh, so your little obsession is a man, Draco?” Rodolphus held him tighter when Draco tried to free himself from his uncle’s grip. “Ah, yes it is... Interesting. See, you’re telling me everything I want to know and I don’t even have to use Legilimency, Veritaserum or the Imperius Curse... well, or seducing. Or is that what you want me to do?”

“No, you paedophilic bastard,” Draco hissed angrily, still struggling to get free but Rodolphus held him close with just one arm.

“I thought you were oh-so-old, so what shall I think about that me being paedophilic comment?” Rodolphus teased and he would sound so cool if he just stopped sounding so bloody amused.

“Just stop it. This isn’t funny,” Draco snapped over his shoulder before he finally stopped struggling and just stood still, hoping that Rodolphus would lose interest in teasing him if he showed no reaction.

“But you’re so cute right now...” Rodolphus’ sigh made Draco huff. “Come on, Draco. Now, you just have to tell me your little secret obsession. I won’t let you go before.”

“Why didn’t you just leave a few minutes ago – woah!” Draco stopped complaining as he was lifted up and suddenly found himself sitting on Rodolphus’ lap on the bed. “Oh, Merlin’s pants, this is really paedophilic now.” He fidgeted uncomfortably on the other man’s thighs and eventually looked over his shoulder, wearing an annoyed expression that sadly could not make Rodolphus’ amused smile disappear. This really had to be entertaining for Rodolphus, otherwise he would have long since gone to plunder the kitchen like his comrades. Gradually, Draco came to the conclusion that it was definitely not compassion that made Rodolphus so curious – he was simply bored.

“You know that not even my father used to let me sit on his lap when I was younger?” Draco leant back against Rodolphus’ chest. “Feels strange...”

“Do you want to get down?” Rodolphus asked but Draco shook his head. “It’s not a picture of Lucius you’re hiding, right? It’s definitely someone a little older than you.”

“How do you...?” Draco turned around again and rolled his eyes as Rodolphus chuckled. “Well, okay. It’s someone older, but you have to stop teasing me with just pretending like you know...”

“It’s quite obvious. You have some sort of father complex, Draco,” Rodolphus explained and just ignored Draco’s snort. “You search for protection in the arms of an older man at exactly this moment.”

“You forced me to,” Draco corrected and he was still unsure if he really liked sitting on someone else’s lap. He knew for sure that he would love to sit on Sirius Black’s lap, with a broad chest at his back and certainly muscular arms wrapped around his torso. But he also knew that the possibility that he could sit on Sirius Black’s lap one day was very, very small. He still did not give up the hope, saving everything he had to save for his one and only obsession. That might be foolish but not as naïve as he had been at the age of thirteen, when he had believed that Sirius Black would come on a black horse and sweep him off his feet to ride into the sunset.

“And now I force you to talk to me,” Rodolphus said, pulling Draco out of his thoughts.

Blinking absently, Draco turned his head. “That’s not fair. I don’t want to talk about it,” he said and started poking his finger into Rodolphus’ thigh, shifting on the leg he was sitting on. “That’ll only make me realise how hopeless it is.” Rodolphus cupped his cheek and lifted his head up again.

“I know how you feel, having my own little obsession,” he said, moving his hand to Draco’s chin and holding him in place as he leant closer. Draco’s eyes widened with the realisation of what Rodolphus was up to, and he immediately turned his head away, pressing his hands in defence against the other man’s chest.

He should have known that this was going to happen. A bunch of men – the few female Death Eaters mostly reminded Draco of men so he did not count them in – in one house and he was visibly the smallest, youngest and most attractive one. Sooner or later someone would have tried to touch him, but the last one he had thought about was his uncle, who had a wife for these things, and Rodolphus was apparently not even drunk.

“I don’t think this is a good idea,” Draco said, his voice barely audible. He took a deep breath because Rodolphus did not remove his hand, instead he ran it over Draco’s throat, holding him from behind like he wanted to strangle him.

“Just tell me, Draco,” Rodolphus rasped into his ear. “What is he like? What kind of men do you like?”

“Err...” Draco gulped so hard that Rodolphus had to feel it with his fingers still lingering on his throat. “Do you... You really want to hear that?”

Rodolphus nodded before resting his temple against Draco’s neck and taking an audible breath. “It’s hard not to talk about something that is always in your mind, isn’t it?”

“Yes... yes, it is,” Draco agreed. “But it would be stupid to tell you. If I expose myself, you’ll know my weakness and I’m not risking that.”

“You’re scared I might use it against you?” Rodolphus’ hand stroked over Draco’s right knee, moving slowly upwards, his palm coming close to a place where Draco only wanted the hands of a certain Black.

“You would definitely. Irresistible...” Draco bit his lower lip when a big hand stroked the fabric of his trousers, rough fingers slipping higher under his shirt before he bucked his hips and gave away that he actually liked this feeling.

“Indeed...” Rodolphus kissed his earlobe, while tracing the pattern of Draco’s hips and ribs. The hand on Draco’s throat slipped lower, starting to unbutton Draco’s shirt to make it easier for Rodolphus to touch every inch of Draco’s skin. “Along with obsession comes weakness. I’m glad that you’ve realised this.”

“So, you are...” Draco caught his breath. Cold air made him shiver after his shirt was pulled from his shoulders, leaving him more exposed to his uncle than he had ever wanted to be. But with those hands caressing his torso he did not mind so much, anticipating Rodolphus’ next move and the foreign feeling that came with it.

He almost jumped at the sensation of chapped lips moving over his neck and shoulder but that was nothing compared to the feeling of a warm hand opening his trousers before slipping inside. Draco grabbed Rodolphus knees and moaned, nearly crying out in unknown pleasure of skilled strokes. Panting heavily, he laid his head back against Rodolphus’ shoulder and rocked back and forth with every movement of the hand that held him almost too tight.

Draco closed his eyes, imagining it would be Sirius Black’s hand stroking him to completion. He almost came right away just from the thought of his unreachable dream breathing against his neck, placing wet kisses on his heated skin and holding him so close it hurt. Shuddering, Draco shook his head when Rodolphus pulled his hand away.

“No, no... don’t stop,” he mumbled mindlessly, clenching to Rodolphus’ legs when his uncle tried to lift him up. But his trembling body was too weak to do anything against the strong arms that threw him on his stomach. Draco dug his fingers into the sheets and held his breath when Rodolphus pulled his trousers down in one smooth motion, leaving Draco completely vulnerable. His eyes widened and once again he shook his head, but this time, because he really did not want this. “Don’t... no...” He did not want this man here with him at this moment. He wanted the first time to be with Sirius Black, and he did not care that he sounded like a foolish child with a hopeless dream.

“No?” Rodolphus dared to chuckle. Draco blushed in embarrassment, his entire body taking a deep shade of red. “I won’t do anything you don’t like.” Draco still tried to hold onto a pillow but Rodolphus rolled him easily around and settled between his legs. With big eyes, Draco watched Rodolphus lowering his head and groaned as his uncle took him into his mouth. Instead of the pillow, Draco now grabbed tufts of black hair, directing Rodolphus lower and simultaneously lifting his hips up, bucking deeper into the warm throat until the movement was stilled by Rodolphus’ hands digging painfully into his flesh, leaving marks on his sensitive, pale skin.

The noises he made were already far too excited, no sounds he ever wanted to escape his throat, so he tried hard not to scream as he reached his climax, biting hard on his lips until he could taste the leaden flavour of blood on his tongue.

Rodolphus released him and sat up, watching Draco for a moment, apparently fascinated by the disgraceful picture he made. Draco turned his head to the side, avoiding the dark eyes and trying to recover his breath. He was unsure what would come next. Rodolphus would surely not leave now without getting anything at all, but the last thing Draco would throw away like that was his virginity.

“Won’t you look at me anymore, Draco?” Rodolphus asked teasingly after Draco’s breathing eventually slowed down.

Draco pressed his lips to a firm line, still tasting blood on them, and reached for his blanket, which he pulled over his naked body up to his chin. Turning to his side, Draco stared stubbornly at the wall and did not react as a warm body come to lie next to him. Rodolphus’ arm wrapped around Draco from behind and pulled him backwards, pressing his back against a hard chest. Draco thought for a moment that the heavy beating he felt might be Rodolphus’ heart, but on the one hand his uncle did not even have a heart and on the other hand it was most likely impossible for a heart to pound in such a fast rhythm. He had to imagine that or mistake it for his own heartbeat... something like that...

“There’s no need to feel embarrassed,” Rodolphus said close to Draco’s ear, nibbling softly on it before moving to Draco’s clenched jaw. “You’re a beautiful thing.”

Draco frowned. “Uhm, thanks. But I’d prefer not to be called a ‘thing’.”

Laughing softly, Rodolphus turned him around and grabbed his chin before Draco could lower it. The way Rodolphus began to stroke his cheeks, brushing slightly sweaty hair out of Draco’s flushed face, was gentle, more lovingly than Draco had expected Rodolphus could be. Draco’s eyes fluttered closed and not because he wanted to avoid his uncle’s gaze, but because he felt comfortable and sleepy. It was definitely not a bad feeling to be held like this and Draco felt the urge to move closer, snuggling against the broad chest and falling asleep in a tight embrace. But it was definitely the wrong man he felt so comfortable with...

“You’ll use that against me,” Draco muttered as he eventually gave into the need to move closer, hiding his face in the crook of Rodolphus’ neck which also held the advantage that he did not have to look at him.

“Nah...” Rodolphus shook his head and patted Draco’s hair, using his hands to keep Draco’s head close to him. “I’ll never use anything against you, Draco, unless you decide to play games with me, then I’ll probably have to kill you.”

Draco tensed a little but he was already half-asleep and he was not planning to tell anyone that his uncle had made him feel good, so he just stayed where he was for a little longer...


The coldness of Draco’s features was completely shattered when he slept. He clutched Rodolphus’ shirt, seeking protection, something that he had never received from his father and that Rodolphus gladly gave him, holding him as close as possible. Pressing his face against Draco’s hair, Rodolphus inhaled the soft scent that reminded him of a fresh summer rain. It seemed like ages ago that he had felt the rain on his skin and it really was ages ago that someone else had slept this peacefully in his arms, and never, ever such exceptional beauty.

Tilting Draco’s chin up with his fingers, Rodolphus took in every inch of the handsome face. Memorising the noble features, the high cheekbones, straight nose, pointed chin and rosy, full mouth that screamed to be kissed until it was swollen. Rodolphus had trouble resisting the slightly parted lips, which deserved bruising passion, not sloppy kisses that did not make your knees weak.

Draco muttered something Rodolphus could not understand but it made him smile, because in a rare moment of peace with pure adorableness just a few inches away, no one could hold back a smile.

Fighting back the urge to kiss Draco, Rodolphus brushed white-blond strands of hair out of the pretty face and continued watching, mesmerised by the rays of silvery moonlight that illuminated Draco’s face and later by the light of the slowly rising sun.

It would not be long before Draco woke on his own. Rodolphus was getting a little impatient, but he knew that he had to be careful in order to make Draco completely his. And Rodolphus was anything but averse to holding Draco a little longer. He was making progress. Draco was after all just a teenager and would definitely give in sooner or later. And until then he would also be emotional attached.

Rodolphus narrowed his eyes slightly and gazed towards the bottom drawer of Draco’s bedside table. If Draco was not already hiding a crush on him... He was so close to discovering Draco’s secret. All he had to do was stand up and open the drawer, but then he would have to leave Draco and even if he did sound like a spoilt child he did not want to leave his place, especially not when Draco wanted him to stay, clinging tighter to him whenever he tried to move.

But even though he tried to hold back his curiosity when it came to Draco’s secret drawer, he could not do so as he heard loud footsteps coming from outside. Frowning slightly, Rodolphus raised his head and listened to the voices, clearly full of excitement.

“Very well...” Rodolphus sighed and leant to Draco, placing a tender kiss on the pale cheek so that he would not wake him. “Sleep well, my Draco,” he whispered, before slipping out of the bed and leaving the room shortly afterwards. He headed for the stairs and rushed down to the entrance hall, where half a dozen people had formed a nearly perfect circle.

In the reddish orange light of the rising sun, Rodolphus noticed a familiar figure lying on the ground in front of his wife. Bellatrix was laughing her usual mad laughter until she saw her husband coming down the stairs. Full of excitement, she giggled, kicking the apparently unconscious man in the stomach and rolling him over with her foot.

“Christmas is early this year,” she lilted and stretched out her arms, presenting what she thought was a present. Rodolphus raised one eyebrow, noticing the pink ribbon that had been wrapped around the upper arm of no less a person than Sirius Black, godfather of the Dark Lord’s personal prey, Harry Potter. He whistled approvingly.

“How did you manage that?” Rodolphus asked, taking in the sight of several men, who seemed like they had a drink too many last night, still staggering against each other and searching for balance. “All alone?” he added and received several snorts and rasped insults for that comment.

“I was bored,” Bellatrix explained with a shrug. “And Draco upset me with his: ‘I don’t want to torture this or that!’ Whiny git... I brought him something nicer to practise with. Something that won’t run away like a bloody Hufflepuff,” she snapped the last sentence directly at Avery, who raised his hands in defence. “So, I wanted to get rid of my anger, and while I was walking around frying some Muggles I found this in a bar with his dear little friends. And because my cousin is a heroic Gryffindor, he loved sacrificing himself so that the nasty children could escape.” Bellatrix let out another shrieking laughter, before clearing her throat. “So, what’ll you make me for breakfast now, Rodolphus? I’m hungry.”

“We have house-elves for that,” Rodolphus mumbled, eyes darting down to the visibly injured man, who bled on the expensive carpet. Sometimes he was surprised what a monster he had married, but he would never tell her that because otherwise he would be the one lying on the floor, showing off his internal organs.

“Weaklings belong in the kitchen,” Bellatrix teased. Rodolphus forced himself to smile although the roaring laughter of the others made him want to jinx Bellatrix with exactly the curse she had annoyed Draco with so often. “So, who’s taking care of the blood? Cissa’s going to kill me if I ruin her carpet...”

“The house-elves,” Rodolphus rasped.

Bellatrix snapped with her fingers before she pointed at Rodolphus and said: “The weakling!”


With a sigh, Draco watched his finger moving over the glass of the window, drawing a line over the couple of trees cutting the horizon from the garden. His other hand was busy running back and forth over his wand and apparently this seemed to keep Rodolphus from asking him what was wrong, because when Draco turned his head he almost thought the older man would jump at him again just because his fingers were moving over wood.

Rodolphus cleared his throat as he noticed Draco’s stare and said: “Draco, stop gazing out the window and focus on our lesson.”

Draco lifted one eyebrow. “Who was staring at me here? You need to focus, Uncle Rodolphus,” he said and practised looking at Rodolphus without blushing because of long forgotten events. He did not care about some unimportant sexual contact that happened between him and his uncle. He would just ignore that and pretend it had never happened.

“If you focused, I would focus, too...” Growling, Rodolphus shook his head and took a deep breath. He stepped closer and leant against the window frame, opposite Draco, who tilted his head expectantly but still wore a cold expression, not letting Rodolphus know it was not so easy pretending those hands had never touched him, those lips had never kissed him and...

Draco turned his head away before the blush that crept up his neck could reach his cheeks.

“I think we might soon actually need you, Draco,” Rodolphus said and reached for Draco’s chin, grabbing it and forcing Draco to look him in the eyes. “You might’ve heard that –”

“Then it’s true?” Draco interrupted, eyes widening full of expectation. “You found –”

“Something to get Potter, yeah... But we’ve often thought that we’d get him and never succeeded.” Rodolphus could be so mean. Draco had first heard the rumours at breakfast, from Avery, and after lunch, Avery had blackmailed his dessert out of him to tell him more, but Draco’s trust had only lasted a few minutes before he realised that Avery might have told him complete shit. But Rodolphus did not tell him anything, either. He was just using practising dark arts as an excuse to ogle him. Maybe, if he took advantage of that, then...

Draco smirked. “Come on, tell me if it’s true,” he said and just to try it he started stroking the wood of his wand very slow and obviously. “Did you catch... him?”

Sadly, Rodolphus did not seem impressed. “Since when are you suddenly interested in gossip? Didn’t you tell me yesterday that I should focus on the war?” Rodolphus seemed to protect himself against Draco’s poor seduction attempts by folding his arms in front of his chest. “Focus, Draco. I’m not kidding.”

Draco let out a heavy sigh and looked around. They had chosen the living room for their practise because the Imperius curse did not need a lot of space like the Cruciatus – well, the victims needed a lot of space. That was probably the reason why everyone wanted him to practise with poor rabbits instead of Avery, who always smashed everything that dared to come close. But now, no one was around. It was nearly time for dinner and those men seemed to always be hungry. Draco had only this chance to talk to his uncle because there was some sort of meeting arranged for tonight and he was not allowed to join, or more precisely, annoy his uncle the whole night with questions about whether the rumours were true.

“Oh, but I thought that you and I...” Draco reached out and poked against Rodolphus’ shoulder with his wand, drawing a line down his chest. “We share things, Uncle Rodolphus. Let’s share some more secrets.”

Rodolphus grabbed his wrist almost painfully, nearly making Draco hiss between clenched teeth. “Why don’t you try to make me talk? We’d both get something from that.”

Draco took that as an invitation and stepped closer, pressing his chest against his uncle’s and looking straight up into the dark eyes. Rodolphus’ grip around his wrist tightened when Draco leant up, standing on the tip of his toes to bring his lips close to Rodolphus’ ear.

“How shall I make you talk?” Draco asked in a husky voice, but apparently he sounded stupid because Rodolphus chuckled warmly against his cheek, which already burned with embarrassment that he had misunderstood what he meant by trying to make him talk.

“With the Imperius curse?” he suggested and let go off Draco’s wrist so that his nephew could hastily step backwards, turning his head away to stare full of concentration out the window. “I am flattered, though, that you don’t seem disgusted by the thought of my hand in your pants.”

Draco coughed. “I should,” he answered more seriously, looking up at Rodolphus while turning his wand between his fingers. “After you let me wake up alone. That’s not nice.”

Grinning, Rodolphus reached out to ruffle Draco’s hair, but he stopped and on second thought he decided to cup Draco’s cheek. His grin softened to a smile that Draco was not used to seeing on Rodolphus’ face, causing him to shift his gaze to the ground for a short moment until he realised that a Malfoy never showed other people when he was nervous. He should control his emotions.

“It’s a good excuse that I had to help throw Sirius Black in the cellar, right?” Rodolphus patted Draco’s cheek and could not resist stroking it once more before pulling his hand away.

Draco barely noticed that Rodolphus seemed to fight the urge to look to the ground himself now, because his heart had suddenly stopped beating. Sirius Black was really here. Draco was close to forgetting everything he had ever learned about controlling his emotions and just run down to see the man he had admired for so long, but just the thought of him being one floor below made his knees weak, every sheet of ice melting to a puddle of sentimental goo.

“Continue?” Rodolphus framed Draco’s face, pulling him up and bending down at the same time. Draco turned his head away before their lips met and instead he felt Rodolphus’ mouth brushing over his cheek, making goose bumps blossom over his skin and nearly making Draco shiver. He did not fight the sudden desire for intimacy, leaning against his uncle and pressing his hands against the other man’s ribs. He only needed a short moment to get his control back, just a short moment...

Closing his eyes, Draco nestled his temple against Rodolphus’ shoulder and enjoyed the feeling of strong arms coming around him. Sirius Black was here. Draco could not believe that he was so close to the fulfilment of his dream – or the biggest disappointment in his life. What if Sirius Black was nothing like he had imagined? He could not cope with such a realisation a second time.

That Black had never actually been a traitor but had been betrayed himself only gave him a more powerful and intriguing background story. And he had not become cold, his aura full of warmth that even seemed to heat the parchment his pictures were printed on. He was such a strong man, like steel, and Draco was never more than fragile glass, only pretending not to be vulnerable. Of course, he did not want to betray his family, for which he sometimes really hated Black, because if he had not decided that his friends were more important to him, then they would have met, then at least Black would have called him cousin, embracing him with the warmth that Potter did not deserved because he could not cherish it like Draco could.

“Draco, are you crying?” Rodolphus asked.

Draco had not realised that a single tear had rolled over his cheek and fell exactly on the skin that was visible next to Rodolphus’ collar. He shook his head and shoved Rodolphus away, demonstrating dry eyes and an almost amused expression, but already missing the comfort and security Rodolphus had offered him.

“Why should I?” Because Sirius Black would never like him. Not even if they were the last two people on earth. He probably did not even know his name, and never would he wrap Draco in his arms right away. That Black was now here was the worst thing that could have happened because it meant that Draco’s illusion had to shatter sooner or later.

“Because I felt something wet dripping on my skin,” Rodolphus said, watching Draco pointing his wand at him. That he was not scared in the slightest was an obvious hint at how weak Draco was at performing Unforgivable Curses. But Rodolphus had to trust him a lot, or he would not let Draco cast the Imperius curse on him. Draco was tempted to take advantage of that, but the consequences would be horrible. His uncle was a more than capable wizard and held the respect of most Death Eaters; having his sympathies was only good for Draco.

“I just drooled a little because you’re so hot,” Draco replied and waggled his eyebrows. Rodolphus laughed and for a moment Draco wished that his uncle would be sensitive enough to realise that Draco wanted to be hugged again, but apparently he had thought wrong when he imagined that he was more than a pretty thing.

“Let’s continue, then,” Rodolphus said, still smiling.

Draco nodded, but it was hard for him to really focus on controlling someone else’s thoughts if he was not even able to control himself at the moment. When he failed again and again, he almost believed that he was too stupid to perform any curse at all and cast a simple Summon charm to test his ability. He had not turned into a Squib, but he was apparently not in the mood to practice powerful dark spells. Aunt Bellatrix would have long ago gone wild, but Rodolphus was more patient, and at times Draco thought that his uncle only acted like he was jumping around the room like a rabbit, but Rodolphus always ensured that he was unable to read his thoughts.

“You might be my favourite nephew, but I won’t give up my dignity for you,” Rodolphus said when they left the living room to have dinner.

“You only have one nephew, Uncle Rodolphus. That’s not much of a compliment,” Draco answered and pursed his lips sulkily as Rodolphus’ arm sneaked its way around his shoulder, pulling him against the other man’s side. “Aunt Bellatrix would’ve told me how much I suck.”

“Stop it, Draco,” Rodolphus said and squeezed Draco’s shoulder before he pushed him inside the dining room. “Look, Avery’s already waiting for you.” Rodolphus pointed at the Death Eater, who patted anxiously on the seat next to him, making Draco sigh with annoyance. “Listen, Draco. You did a good job,” Rodolphus said in a low voice so that nobody could hear his attempt to comfort Draco and start teasing them because of it. “Have a little faith in yourself.”

Draco nodded with a forced smile on his lips and shrugged Rodolphus’ hand off, hurrying towards his seat next to Avery, who hastily grabbed his arm and pulled him much too close.

“You’re going to play babysitter tonight, Draco,” he said and grinned full of malice, ignoring how harshly Draco shoved him away.

“Babysitter?” Draco looked around and tried to stay calm although half a dozen men and his aunt were laughing at him. “What do you mean? I won’t give you my nonexistent breast, Avery.” For a change, everyone was laughing at Avery’s now reddened cheeks and Draco smirked contentedly.

“We have a very important meeting and your mummy’s upstairs crying again,” Avery said, stabbing a metaphorical knife into Draco’s chest by bringing up the mental state of his mother on purpose, but Draco did not show how much he wanted to throw a Cruciatus at Avery again. “Someone has to feed our new guest.”

My guest,” Draco corrected. “It’s my house. You’re actually not allowed to bring anyone here without asking me.”

“Uh...” Avery faked a frightened expression. “And what now, Draco? Transfiguring me into a rabbit and then cuddling me to death?” That those men had to always laugh so loudly – only Aunt Bellatrix could beat all of them.

Rodolphus cleared his throat and immediately silence filled the room, only broken by an annoyed huff from Bellatrix, who continued mashing her food up and put much too much on her fork, aiming to throw it at her husband.

“There’s nothing you can do about it, Draco,” he said with a small smile. “But maybe doing this absolutely annoying stuff – and you know how bratty Gryffindors can be – will make you take other things more seriously.” Rodolphus winked at him and leant casually back just at the right moment to avoid Bellatrix’ food-missile. Draco could not deny that it was pretty cool to make everyone laugh at Bellatrix for once and he could not think of anyone other than his uncle who could do it.

It was definitely a good thing to be Rodolphus’ favourite nephew. But sadly it did not stop Avery from stealing all the food Draco liked...

Not that he felt very hungry at the moment. The thought that he had to spend a whole night with Sirius Black alone in this big house scared him, while the idea of having Potter’s godfather at his mercy also made his poor heart beat double its speed. If he could do a proper Imperius curse he would make Black like him, but the longer he thought about this, the more he realised that he did not want to force Black into liking him. That was simply bad. It meant that his feelings for this man were deeper than he had thought.

And that without ever having a closer look at him...

Draco shook his head while he was walking down the stairs, entering the dark cellar. It was not so long ago that Fortescue had suffered here, listening to the steady dripping of something echoing from the high walls. Draco did not even want to know what Aunt Bellatrix had eventually done to the man, but he noticed some blood stains on the floor. He made a mental note that he needed to tell the house-elves to clean down here.

It was quiet in the cellar. Draco did not like it at all and he could not do anything about the goose bumps on his skin. He tried to rub them away before searching for the cell with Sirius Black inside, but it seemed to be too cold for that. Did Black need a blanket? Draco only had a tray with some dry bread and water hovering in front of him.

He found Black at the very back of the cellar, sitting on the floor and leaning with his back against the wall. His eyes were hidden behind shiny strands of black hair and no matter how much Draco wanted to see them, the most striking thing about Black were certainly his hands; elegant with long fingers that could easily wrap around your throat and break it with their hidden strength. Draco gulped hard and audibly, the noise making Black look up although he must have heard Draco’s steps long before.

And there was the look Draco had been so afraid of. Black’s eyes – just a little darker grey than Draco’s – held absolutely no sympathy for him. All the warmth Draco had seen in pictures, even when Black had still been a teenager, had disappeared and although his eyes were not cold, they were simply hollow.

Draco gulped again and let the tray hover through a hole between bars that lay far too high to be reached non-magical. Black first ignored the tray that landed next to him and trained his eyes on Draco, whose knees had long gone weak as noodles.

“So...” His voice was dark and hoarse, but the latter did not seem to be normal, because Black cleared his throat, reaching for the glass of water. One word was still enough to ensure Draco’s prior thought of walking through fire just to hear it. All the pain he had ever experienced, he would take again just for one more word. “You’re the new house-elf?” Black’s delicious lips curled into a smirk that should have made Draco angry but he could only sigh at the sight of it.

Draco wanted to say something particularly snarky, something eternally memorable but he could not think straight with Sirius Black only a few feet away from him.

“Not as talkative as I’d imagined, Draco Malfoy,” Black said, emptying the glass in one gulp and wiping the wetness off his mouth with the back of his hand.

Draco’s eyes widened slightly. Black knew who he was... well, of course he did. Potter was probably constantly bad mouthing him. What should he do now? Telling Black how flattered he was that he knew his name? Because he could not think of anything else. So much about being in control of his emotions...

“What are you going to do, now? Just standing there, ogling me?” Black did not complain about the dryness of his bread, ripping a piece off and swallowing it hungrily. “Never seen another human before?”

“You’re not funny, Black,” Draco finally managed to say, turning his back to Black and gazing into the darkness of the corridor. “I’ve seen countless people come down here but never leave again.” He looked over his shoulder at Black, whose smile had disappeared. “I just wondered how long you’re going to stay...” With a sigh he turned on the spot, gazing down at Black. “They say you’re strong. But obviously they lied.”

“Sorry to disappoint you, boy,” Black said, smiling again. But Draco did not want to see a smile that never reached Black’s eyes, which stayed hard as rock.

Draco avoided Black’s gaze from now on, focusing on his hands. “They’ll only use you to get Potter. Why are you so calm?”

“Why are you interested in that?” Black replied, sounding somehow amused. His voice was hypnotising, not showing a bit of fear, complete control of at least one emotion. Draco knew that this was most likely the only emotion Sirius Black would never show anyone. How he sat there, one leg pulled up to his chest and his arm casually resting on his knee, simply showed how relaxed he was, probably very certain that he would get out of here unharmed.

“You’re a welcome change, Black,” Draco replied, reminding himself to keep breathing. “I’ve been...” He shook his head and did not finish his sentence. He never opened up that easily and he should not start with the enemy, no matter how long he had dreamt of this moment.

“So, you’re not planning on leaving soon then, eh?” Black swallowed his bread and rose to his feet, making Draco want to step back when he approached him. But there were bars between them and Black could not reach him even as he moved his arms to lie between the bars. Tilting his head, Black eyed him up. He looked just... Draco knew no words to describe this picture but just with leaning against the cold metal bars, Black made Draco’s heart beat so hard that it was close to jumping out off his chest. But it immediately stopped when he noticed the dried blood on Black’s robes. He was hurt or had been hurt. Somebody had dared to hurt his Black. That was simply inacceptable.

“It’s not like I have anything else to do,” Draco said a bit husky, but he did not show that he wanted to clear his throat or have a glass of water himself.

“Well, well...” Black shrugged. “What about getting your revenge, little one?” Draco’s frown seemed to amuse Black. “You know... the thing with your daddy? You just waited to be alone with me to show me how well Bellatrix trained you to use the Unforgivable Curses, right?”

“She’s not much of a good teacher,” Draco admitted and his heart gave two loud and slow thumps when Black’s dark eyes lit up, looking more grey for the glimpse of a second. “She was upset with me when she ran into you. I can be proud that it’s thanks to me that you’re here now.”

Black raised his eyebrows. “Pretty fond of yourself,” he muttered and shook his head slightly, before pushing himself away from the bars, starting to pace around in his cell, his eyes never leaving Draco. “Of course, it’s your fault the world that we know is coming to an end. I’d be proud of that, too.”

Draco rolled his eyes and brushed a strand of blond hair out of his face. “You seem to be equally fond of yourself if you think you’re the reason the world’s coming to an end,” Draco said, emphasising the last words dramatically, apparently surprising Black with that, because his eyes widened slightly and he stopped pacing around, turning to face Draco again.

“What are you up to, boy? There must be a reason why you’re down here,” Black said, narrowing his eyes suspiciously.

Draco pointed towards the tray. “I brought you food.”

“And not enough water.” Black came closer again, holding onto the bars with both hands. “My mouth’s too dry to talk.”

“I’m not here to make you talk about your stupid Order secrets,” Draco said and snapped his fingers, looking down to the house-elf that appeared next to him. “Get our guest some more water. And don’t you dare put something else in there or I’ll break all your little fingers separately.” Draco let out a sigh after the house-elf disappeared with a whimper. “You cannot even trust your house-elves these days.”

“Tell me about it,” Black murmured, his face hardening as Draco smiled. “You shouldn’t do that. Your smile looks awful.”

Draco bit his bottom lip and scowled at Black, kicking at the house-elf when it appeared again. The tray it balanced fell to the floor and the bottle of water shattered, leaving nothing for poor thirsty Sirius Black, who looked like he wanted to strangle Draco. At a closer look, his lips were chapped and Draco knew that he had not gotten water all day, but he did not feel pity anymore.

“Oh, has the mean Sirius hurt your feelings?” Black shook his head. “What are you going to do now? Finally have a reason to torture me?”

“I am already,” Draco responded, nodding towards the puddle of water the house-elf wiped up. “Giving you no water is torture.”

Black looked stunned. “Not for a wannabe Death Eater. You should be thriving on my screams and pleas to just kill me, finally ending my anguish. Something like that.” Black’s eyes lingered on the glistening wetness on the ground and he let out a longing sigh. “Well, this is certainly a beginning. When’s your aunt coming?”

“Why?” Draco waved dismissively at the house-elf, who disappeared together with the tray from Black’s cell.

“Because she’ll do a better job at torturing me than you, definitely,” Black said, rolling his eyes quite obviously.

“I didn’t know you’re yearning for a Cruciatus curse, Black.” Draco shrugged his shoulders. “I have to disappoint you, because no one’s here. The only thing that keeps you here is a teenager who can’t even torture a rabbit. How does that feel?” Draco did not care about Black finding his smile awful. He just had to smile at the sight of Black’s jaw nearly dropping to the floor. “I assume not very good.”

Black snorted with laughter and continued walking around in his cell. “So, little Draco Malfoy is scared all alone in this huge house, and because no one else is here, he comes to me for comfort. Interesting...”

Draco’s smile slowly disappeared. “Are you perverting my words just to feed your ego?”

Stopping on the spot, Black frowned and scratched the back of his head. Eventually, he nodded. “Yep.” He grinned at Draco and came back to the bars, sizing him up with his eyes getting brighter bit by bit. “I want to have some fun before I die.”

Draco really hoped that was just some careless remark, but his heart stopped at the thought of his aunt or someone else killing Sirius Black. He might be a typical, arrogant Gryffindor, but it could have been worse. Black was still so much like Draco had pictured him and he was simply too handsome to die at this young age.

“Who said you’re going to die? Dead, you’re not worth anything,” Draco said, his voice a little too hoarse. How could he have simply forgotten to consider what they might do to Black? He did not want this. Black was not allowed to die before he realised what a perfect couple they would make. And then Draco would kick his nice arse because Black had been mean to him.

“Worried, little one?” Black dared to grin knowingly although he could not know about Draco’s stupid little crush. It was not that easy to read him. He knew that. He was a Malfoy and if he did not want the people to be aware of his emotions, they were not. Just that simple.

“Stop teasing me, Black,” Draco demanded, but Black seemed anything but impressed, and even though he was the one sitting behind bars. “Stop it, or I’ll show you what a proper compensation for my aunt I am.”

Black shook his head in amusement. “You can’t even harm a rabbit, Draco Malfoy.”

“A rabbit is way cuter than you,” Draco snapped back and felt embarrassing heat painting his cheeks scarlet because of Black’s wide grin. Why had he told Black this so that he could use this oh-so-innovative line to insult him? He knew for sure that he could torture a Flobberworm. “Stop grinning or I’ll make you...”

Black only looked more amused. “You are the cute one here,” he said and that comment made Draco blush so furiously that his cheeks probably glowed in the dark. “And you’re definitely not a murderer.” Before Draco could open his mouth, Black tapped against his own cheek before nodding to Draco. “You wouldn’t blush that easily if you’re a cruel killer.”

Draco lowered his head slightly. “I don’t... I... You know nothing about me, Black. Just shut up.”

“Just go away if you’re tired of me,” Black said and reached through the bars. “Or come a little closer.”

Draco lifted his head in confusion but how could he resist Sirius Black’s hand? Slowly, he stepped forward but stayed out of reach. It was comparable to step closer to a warming fire and one touch would literally make him melt, that much Draco knew for sure.

“Remus Lupin told me about you,” Black continued, pulling his arm back before Draco could throw his pride away and just touch his hand. He wanted to feel these fingers on his skin and he did not have a clue what kept him from fulfilling his dream.

“Did he tell you that I’m a spoilt, arrogant brat?” Draco folded his arms in front of his chest because otherwise he would have long flung them around Black, and not even bars would have stopped him.

“No, that’s more Harry’s line,” Black said and shrugged, moving those broad shoulders up and flexing his muscles as he did so. “But there are always two sides of the same coin. I think you should polish the other one more properly. The one that gives you that adorable worry line on your forehead when you think about the possibility that they might kill me. The one that is responsible for the glimpse of compassion when I told you that I need more water.”

“Compassion...” Draco shook his head and backed away before Black could grab his shoulder to stop him. “Compassion is a weakness. A Malfoy has no weakness.” Draco snorted at Black, who suddenly looked like he wanted to slam his fist against the wall. “You’re naïve if you think that your handsomeness can talk me into getting you out of here!”

Black’s hand were no longer balled into fists when he finally realised what Draco had said, looking as shocked as the younger boy, who had also become aware of his foolish words. “You think me handsome?” The smile on Black’s face held all the warmth Draco had always associated with Black. It was all he needed to pull out his wand and open the lock.

Draco shook his head, backing further away. “I... have to go...”

“Hey!” Black reached out to him once more but Draco turned on the spot and hurried away in a flurry of robes. “Wait a minute! Come back here!” Black’s voice echoed from the walls, making Draco run faster until he had trouble breathing but that did not stop him. If there was something he could always run away from it was embarrassment and he had just made a bloody fool out of himself.

Slamming the door of his room shut behind him, Draco threw himself on his bed and hid his face in the pillows. He could not believe that he was capable of being so ridiculous though Black had obviously used him to his advantage. Nothing good could come out of his crush. In the end, he might be the one who let Black escape and nobody would forgive him... but he could never forgive himself if he let Black die in here after he had been so kind. And for being locked up and close to being tortured to death, he had been incredibly kind. Maybe it was not more than a tactic, taking advantage of Draco’s youth and the glimpses of compassion he had seen... but...

Draco rolled onto his back, staring at the ceiling and cooling the blush on his cheeks with his hands. Maybe he had a chance to make all his dreams come true and he would be a real fool if he did not give it a try.


Darkness and overwhelming fatigue could not keep Rodolphus under his sheets when the door of his room opened with a shrieking creak. He needed to remind Draco to tell the house-elves to oil the hinges. But maybe not now... Draco did not look like he wanted to talk about the quirks of an old house. The spark of joy that Draco had come to him was immediately smothered by the sight of the depressed expression.

“Hey...” Draco raised a hand to greet Rodolphus before closing the door behind him. “I’m not breaking your sleep, apparently.”

“I had a very busy day,” Rodolphus said but made space on his bed for Draco to sit down. “And I am extremely tired.”

“That at least assures me that you won’t try to start groping,” Draco said and pulled Rodolphus’ blanket over his thighs. “I didn’t know with who else I could talk...” He stiffened as Rodolphus moved closer, swinging his arm around Draco’s waist, hand landing on the bottom of his stomach and pulling him higher on the bed.

“I could be too tired to be a good conversational partner,” Rodolphus breathed against Draco’s neck, feeling the goose bumps blossoming on it as he nestled his temple on the soft skin. “Care to wake me?” His fingers slipped in Draco’s pyjama pants, but just barely. Breath hitched in his throat before Draco’s delicate fingers wrapped around Rodolphus’ wrist and pulled the hand away.

“I didn’t bring any coffee along,” Draco replied with an audible smirk, already controlled again, but the ice-sheet was cracking.

“Too bad...” Rodolphus sighed against Draco’s skin and contently noticed his nephew shivering. “During all those boring parts of the meeting...” His breath skated over heated skin and he was able to watch the blush slowly creeping over Draco’s neck. “I was thinking about you.”

“You shouldn’t become too addicted, Uncle Rodolphus. It’s not a virtue to seduce one’s nephew,” Draco said, not able to cover that he was slightly tensed.

“Ah, but it’s too much fun to stop.” Rodolphus tugged on Draco and smirked at the sudden surprised noise Draco made as he landed on his back, lying flat on the mattress and not being able to free himself from Rodolphus, who held him down with his weight. For a moment Draco looked like a trapped animal, a poor timid fawn with big eyes full of fear. The way he struggled was not playful and he tossed his head away as Rodolphus’ lips came too close to his.

“Not on the mouth,” he said between clenched teeth.

“Maybe you’d rather said ‘not at all’?” Rodolphus did not release Draco, but there was nothing more important to him than to fill those bewitching grey eyes with joy instead of fear, so he lifted himself up on his elbows and smiled at Draco. Slowly, Draco relaxed underneath him, still not used to this position, to another person invading his personal space. But Rodolphus did not want to hurt him, although he might be a little intrusive. All he wanted was for Draco to return his affection. Never had he wished more fervently for something.

“I can speak for myself.” Pressing his lips in a firm line, Draco reached out a hand and brushed a strand of dark hair out of Rodolphus’ eyes. “But not if you shut me up. Am I that annoying that no one wants to talk to me anymore?”

“And here I thought I’d be your first choice for a conversation...” Rodolphus shook his head to show Draco his disappointment, but he was not feeling anything other than the smooth fingertips moving over his temple and cheek. “Who rejected you, Draco? Anyone who doesn’t want to give you a shoulder to cry on gets into trouble with me.”

“Well...” Draco tried not to smile but he obviously felt flattered. “Not really rejected but he was very... intrusive. I’m confused now.”

Rodolphus did not need to see the hopeful spark in Draco’s eyes to know that he was talking about them. There was nothing else Draco could be talking about. Nothing interesting happened in his life, or Rodolphus would know about it. The only thing that could confuse him was... well, this.

“Confused, yeah?” Rodolphus leant down to Draco’s throat, softly kissing the perfect skin. Draco shuddered underneath him, hand tangling in Rodolphus’ hair. “But that’s just your head, Draco. In your heart you always know what you want. Hearts cannot get confused by words.”

“You really are tired, Uncle Rodolphus. Talking weird stu-uff...” Draco let out a shaky breath because Rodolphus’ teeth clamped down a little too hard on his throat, marking the pale skin. It had to hurt a lot, because Draco nearly tore the hair out of Rodolphus’ head. “I wanted to talk. You can’t talk if...” He never finished his sentence, moaning as Rodolphus’ knee slipped between his legs. Draco bit hard on his lip and Rodolphus increased the pressure of his knee to see Draco’s expression morphing into one of pleasure.

Rodolphus had never been a generous giver, but it seemed natural to ensure that Draco felt good. It was not a selfless generosity and nothing he should be proud of. Pleasing Draco until he softened up to return the feeling was Rodolphus’ aim.

"Let's just do some post-coital talking, Draco," Rodolphus rasped while moving downwards. Draco's attempt to answer was replaced by a surprised gasp as Rodolphus ripped his shirt open and started roughly kissing down Draco's chest. He wished Draco would say his name, but until now he only drew primitive, monosyllabic words from Draco's irresistible mouth. More than to hear his name, he wanted to kiss Draco, but that gesture was apparently supposed to be Draco's first move. A kiss from Draco Malfoy meant more than a thousand words to him.

Rodolphus kissed the middle of Draco's ribcage, before straightening himself and reaching for Draco's pants. Everything he wanted to do to Draco came to his mind and he could not choose, impatiently waiting for Draco to give him the permission to just go on and fuck him. But patience was rewarded.

“I...” Draco had trouble breathing, especially as Rodolphus lifted his legs to kiss and lick his inner thighs. “I just wanted to talk, Uncle Rodolphus. This... This makes me feel quite guilty.” He did not look guilty, not even ashamed although he was effectively naked in front of Rodolphus. Not staring at this sensuous picture was virtually impossible.

“Is that so?” That did not keep Rodolphus from placing Draco’s legs on his shoulders and leaning down to the visible proof that Draco was not averse to the thought of his unrelated uncle touching him.

Draco nodded unnecessarily. “There’s... someone... I...” He blushed, leaving Rodolphus alone with the puzzle pieces and Rodolphus had to think really hard to finally come to a result.

“Oh...” Draco was worried about Bellatrix. Rodolphus suppressed his laughter. Draco seemed to be blind. Rodolphus had never shared a room with his wife at Malfoy Manor and he doubted that Bellatrix would do anything other than hexing him out again if he tried. Rodolphus shook his head as the thought of Bellatrix erased all arousal at once. “Don’t worry. No one needs to know and no one would care anyway. Nobody expects from us that we’re upholder of moral standards, right?”

Draco smiled weakly. “But I...”

“You like being with me, Draco, don’t you?” Rodolphus could not help but smirk when Draco nodded immediately, as though he was afraid that Rodolphus would kick him out otherwise. “Why stop things that feel good?”

If Draco said that he still thought it was wrong, Rodolphus would stop, but he was shocked that he was really afraid as Draco opened his mouth. “Don’t stop...” Relieved, Rodolphus leant into Draco, bringing his lips close to Draco’s tempting mouth. “Not on the mouth.” Again, Draco turned his head away and Rodolphus would have frowned in confusion that Draco did not take the opportunity to kiss him now, but the hands that moved under his shirt distracted him. Draco found scars on his back, tracing them with his flawless fingers and making Rodolphus shiver. He arched his back, which had stayed untouched for way too long. Already panting slightly, he pulled away to yank his shirt over his head.

Draco’s expression had changed. No hint of a timid fawn was visible and for a moment the silvery moonlight let his eyes sparkle in an almost malicious way. But Rodolphus failed to think about this any longer because Draco’s hands pulled him down, pressing their bodies tightly together and moving down to release Rodolphus from the painful tightness of his pants. Rodolphus might be lying atop of Draco but he was not in control of the situation anymore. Draco parting his legs and wrapping them around him seemed illusive, nothing more than a dream.

But Rodolphus was still miles away from fulfilling his dream. He was not allowed to thrust into Draco. As soon as he tried Draco slipped lower, lifting his hips up against Rodolphus’ and started grinding against him. A part of Rodolphus felt anger, but the passion just swallowed the similar fierce feeling and created a heat that was unbearable, causing him to dig his fingers deep into Draco’s hips, simultaneously holding him on the mattress to regain control.

Rodolphus reached between their bodies, stopped slamming against Draco and stroked them instead to completion. Draco let out small, sinful moans, his movements becoming frantic in their nature. Rodolphus was not cruel. He had missed the heat of another body too long to play games. It was a miracle that he did not come from just the feeling of Draco’s flesh rubbing against his body, but he did not last much longer than Draco did.

Sweat dripped from his brow onto Draco’s chest and Rodolphus lowered his head to lick the liquid off Draco, also tasting the salty substance that covered Draco’s whole body. Something itched on his back and he realised seconds later that Draco’s short fingernails had scratched too roughly over his skin.

The light of the moon had vanished again, disappeared behind dark clouds, but Draco’s eyes seemed to shine on their very own, staring brilliantly at his uncle. Rodolphus brushed the sweaty strands of white-blond hair from Draco’s face and smiled when Draco closed his eyes because of the gesture, showing how much he enjoyed it. He did not open his eyes again, his breathing slowing down and becoming steady again.

So much about the post-coital talking bit...

Rodolphus moved onto his side and pulled his arm around Draco’s slender body, pulling him closer and making sure that the blanket covered Draco so that he did not feel cold. Holding so strong emotions for Draco was a weakness but why should he care as long as it made him so incredibly happy?


Waking up in someone else’s arms was something completely new to Draco. That might be the reason why he did not sleep long. The moon was visible near the window frame, although most of the time hidden by huge mountains of clouds that had brought rain with them. Maybe that was another reason why Draco could not fall asleep again. The big raindrops that drummed against the glass annoyed him as much as his sped-up heartbeat, but the breathing in his neck was somehow relaxing. Still, it made Draco feel guilty.

It was not foolish to feel guilty because of intimate actions with his uncle, who was more than twice his age and even married. It was normal to feel guilty for these reasons, but Draco found himself not caring about any of them. He felt bad because this was not the arm of the right man wrapped around him. The right man was in the cellar and waited for his death – or at least the threat of it. The thought of him being hurt, tortured or just insulted by those cruel men and especially his aunt made bile rise in Draco’s throat, not even the warm hand on his stomach could change how sick he felt.

He wished he had given Sirius Black at least one more glass of water. With a sigh, Draco turned his head around and looked over his shoulder at Rodolphus, who slept now instead of watching him the whole night or something like that, but he was not such a creepy bastard. Aunt Bellatrix would probably do that. Sitting in a chair in the darkness and ogling him.

Draco blew gently against Rodolphus’ face but provoked no reaction, so he turned away again. The dried sweat on his body made him feel dirty. Rodolphus would not notice if he took a shower and then crawled back into the comfortable warmth of his embrace, but that would definitely make Draco feel better. It was not like he got up to sneak into the cellar, crossing the line of a pervert to watch Sirius Black sleeping the sleep of the just.

Cautiously, he freed himself from Rodolphus’ grip and slipped out of the bed. The coldness made him shiver and he rubbed his upper arms while searching for his pants, which he pulled hastily up, but he could not close the buttons of his shirt, which were ripped off and he was too tired to magically fix them.

Without a glance over the shoulder, he headed for the door and slipped into the corridor, looking around for anyone who might still be awake. It would certainly not be good for him to get caught stepping out of the room of his uncle in the middle of the night. His mother would have a heart attack and Aunt Bellatrix would probably become jealous that someone touched her dear Dray-Dray, not caring about her husband, while all the other blunt men would never stop teasing him, and discovering that he was anything but straight could lead to other not so pleasant events that Draco wanted to stay clear of.

But there were no noises except the usual creaking of the floorboards and whistling of the wind, so Draco went along the corridor to the nearest bathroom where he stripped again. He had wanted to avoid a look into the mirror, but the marks on his throat and chest even caught his attention out of the corner of his eye with their deep red and bluish colour. His perfectly white skin was covered over and over with those repulsive bruises and would not disappear no matter how hard he rubbed as soon as he stood under the gushing shower head. He missed the calming influence water normally had when it ran over his face, but how could he feel clean if those marks stayed?

Draco sniffed and blinked, trying to get rid of the burning in his eyes – probably because of the soap. Lifting his head, Draco eventually closed his eyes because of the water dashing against his face.

Why did he feel so dirty?

The steam from the shower was clogging the air as Draco stepped out into the bathroom. He felt like he could not breathe in here, his heart beating painfully against his chest. With shaking fingers, Draco dressed again and this time he never looked into the mirror, not caring about how his wet hair looked. He would go back to bed anyway. Rodolphus would not care about if his hair was combed or not. He had seen him in a completely feral state and had still looked at him like he was the most precious thing in the world.

He sniffed again and this time he was sure that tears were prickling in his eyes. Shaking his head vigorously he stepped outside the bathroom. He had done nothing to be ashamed of. He was young and should enjoy sex, not clinging to the false hope that someday Sirius Black would deflower him like in a perfect romance novel. And somehow he was still a virgin, so he had absolutely no reason to feel like he had betrayed someone...

Draco walked around the corner and towards the stairs, something pulling him down to the entrance hall. He had betrayed someone. Himself. That was the worst case of betrayal.

Looking in the direction of the cellars, Draco gulped hard but failed to swallow the lumps in his throat. He wanted to see him. It was not more than a few hours ago that he had talked to him for the first time but he had not even touched him or come close enough to smell him. He needed to see him again.

Draco had already made one step forward when he heard voices coming from the living room. Turning around, he snuck closer and peered into the room. Aunt Bellatrix was apparently rambling to the others about which curses she would use on their newest prisoner. Draco did not want to hear that. The thought of Black suffering just to amuse Bellatrix felt like a Cruciatus curse on himself. But there was nothing Draco could do to stop it...

He turned around again, ready to go back upstairs as Bellatrix’ voice purred: “The best thing is that we don’t even need him alive anymore. Such a nice practise for Draco, isn’t it? I’ll let him do it. Torture dear Sirius until he begs for death and then grant him his wish.”

Draco froze, still hearing Bellatrix’ voice but not understanding her words anymore. They would kill him. No, they wanted him to ‘practise’ with him? Draco started trembling and his knees felt weak as he stumbled forwards, rushing down to the cellar without even rethinking the situation.

If he already felt dirty because he came close to another person, how would he feel if he let someone hurt Sirius Black? Not to mention the fact that Draco could not even cast a simple Tickling Charm on him.

Panting, he slipped over the ground and grabbed onto the bars for balance. It was so cold down here that he could see his breath leaving his mouth in small cloudlets. Draco’s skin was already covered with goose bumps and his wet hair froze together in thick strands. He had not the faintest idea why Sirius Black was not shivering.

“If you’re not careful you’ll break your neck.” Black was still awake, rising to his feet and stretching himself like he had just took a nap in a really comfortable bed. The smile he gifted Draco was honest and held more sympathy than Draco could cope with. Embarrassed, he looked away, questioning the mental state of the man he once believed was the personification of madness. Did Black know what was about to happen to him? Did he even consider the possibility that he might never leave this cell alive again?

“I...” Draco gulped hard, the lumps in his throat from Bellatrix’ threat still choking him.

“You don’t need to apologise, Draco.” His name leaving those lips in this gentle way felt better than every climax in his life. Draco’s eyes fluttered closed and he tilted his head away so that Black could not see how much his melodious voice affected him. “It was just a glass of water. Not the end of the world. But you know... I feel flattered that you came to visit me again. A hint that you have something like a conscience.”

“I wish I hadn’t...” Draco puffed out another cloudlet, turning to face Sirius and stiffening as he noticed the other man leaning against the cold metal again, arms dangling between the bars. He did not touch Draco. What was wrong with this man? He had the chance to just grab Draco and steal his wand, breaking free and escaping his death. “I wish I could let them do it...”

“You can’t?” The right corner of Black’s mouth tilted upwards, bearing some resemblance to a smile. “It’s hard, isn’t it? Seeing such cruel things happen right in front of your nose again and again and not being able to do more than act like you think it’s right. It was nearly the same for me once, you know?”

Draco shook his head. “You never...”

“I had to make a decision. I didn’t want to watch my cousin playing with Muggles like they were toys. And let me tell you, Bellatrix was never that cruel to my teddy bear.” He knew what they wanted to do to him. Draco opened his mouth but did not find the right words to express himself. His admiration was growing with every second he spent with this man, strong like tempered steel, and when he gazed into those grey eyes he wanted to search for a glimpse of vulnerability.

“What did she do to you?” Draco’s eyes darted down to the stained blood on Black’s robes. Slowly, he reached out a hand and expected Black to back away, but he let Draco touch him, let him pull the side of his robe away and examine the slashed shirt. Someone had tried to heal an apparently very deep wound but had failed, like most Death Eaters when it came to healing.

“It’s nothing. I’m just glad she didn’t hit Harry.” Black touched Draco’s hand before he could brush over the injury. His fingers were rough and long, enclosing Draco’s wrist completely. Black had to feel how hard Draco’s blood was pulsating through his veins but he did not hold him longer than necessary, just pulling his hand away from the wound. Draco doubted that Black knew why he was down here and it was better that he did not know about Draco’s feelings. He was not in love with Black, just with the picture he had painted over years, now and then adding more colours to it. If Black thought Draco was coming to him because of compassion, Draco would not prove otherwise.

“It’s nothing... How can you... It must hurt so badly,” Draco said in a low voice, looking up to meet Black’s gaze. Comparing the grey orbs to stones was not apt anymore. They were warm, one look bringing Draco’s blood to a boil and he was sure that his arousal was burning a hole through his clothes. At least, he was not freezing anymore... “Potter will run straight into his death if he comes to save you.”

“He won’t,” Black said and lowered his chin slightly, but not to let his eyes travel over Draco’s body. “He’s so much more important than I am. There are others that’ll keep him from doing impetuous things. I have to disappoint your family and friends, sadly.”

“You told them this? Are you insane?” Draco felt the strong urge to hit something. “They’re going to kill you if you’re useless. They already want to. And it’s your fault. That’s not brave or heroic, just stupid.” Draco tried hard not to blink, because he knew that if he did tears would roll over his cheeks and he did not want to embarrass himself even more.

“It’s the right thing to do,” Black simply said.

Draco took a step back and pulled out his wand. For a moment, Black seemed uncertain what he was about to do. He probably even considered for a second that the so called glimpses of compassion he had seen were just in his imagination, because otherwise he would not have looked shocked as Draco opened the door of the cell.

“This is wrong and right at the same time. So, how should I feel now?” Draco’s voice was shaking as horribly as his hand and Black was not making anything easier by just staying where he was. They stared at each other for what felt like an eternity, until one single tear rolled over Draco’s cheek. Black seemed unable to look at such weakness and hastily moved towards Draco, framing his face and wiping the tear away.

“There’s no true right or wrong, just different views. This is what separates us from our enemies. One day we make a decision what we think is the right thing to do.” Black smiled at him before pulling Draco close against him, pressing his face against his chest to let him cry his tears unseen, but Draco’s eyes were dry and big because he was shocked, overwhelmed by the feel of Sirius Black’s body giving him support. “From my perspective, you’re about to do the right thing.”

Draco nodded and sighed as Black’s hand stroked over his still wet hair. It felt so right to stand here. Draco wished this moment would last forever, but Black pulled away and smiled at him like he would smile at a stupid child that needed comfort.

“Follow me,” Draco muttered and shoved Black entirely away. Straightening, Draco moved ahead and walked up the stairs to the entrance hall, Black just inches behind him. If their footsteps did not reveal them then his banging heart would. Draco peered into the entrance hall and gulped hard as he heard Bellatrix still talking to... well, maybe herself.

“Your feet,” Draco muttered and turned to Black, pointing at his shoe with his wand. “Lift them.”

Black frowned and did as he was told. “Not fond of kneeling in front of me, eh?” He winked at Draco, who focused on Black’s shoes instead of his certainly not flirtatious comments. He was just talking about Draco’s pride, most likely.

Silencio,” Draco muttered and motioned for Black to test if his feet were still making noises. When they did not, he cast the Silencing Charm on his own feet and snuck into the entrance hall. Black followed him closely behind the next pillar. The bright light in the hall was not advantageous, not at all, but Draco knew at least where the guards were and this was after all still his home. He did not know every hidden passage but most, but sadly the one he would have preferred was unreachable, as they would need to walk through the living room.

There was also one in the kitchen, but that was the most loved place in the house. Even the night could not keep those ever-hungry men away from the food. The others would stay in their rooms or in the living room. Two Death Eaters stood right behind the door, taking their regular rounds in the garden. The back entrance was also guarded but Avery was mostly asleep during his watches.

Draco grabbed Black’s wrist and looked at his watch, smiling in satisfaction. “Stay close to me,” he whispered and pulled Black after him, still holding his wrist. Soundlessly, they hurried into the next corridor, which was at least completely soaked in darkness. Draco walked straight forward, not slowing down although he noticed that Black had trouble moving in the foreign environment. As they passed the next corner, the dim light of the winter garden guided them like a beacon.

Draco almost stumbled as Black’s fingers suddenly slipped between his, squeezing his hand. It was like a boost of encouragement. Draco suddenly wished that the light would not come closer, just wanting to run forever with Sirius Black holding his hand, embracing the feeling that nothing could go wrong.

And nothing was going wrong. Avery was sitting in a comfortable chair next to the door, deeply asleep and snoring softly. A bottle of whiskey stood next to his feet and ensured that he would not wake soon, so Draco tugged on Black’s hand and carefully walked to the door. As Black reached to open it he hastily shook his head. Protection spells were something Avery was more than capable of and they could easily cost you your fingers, maybe even a hand or whatever came too close to the door. Draco had spent enough time with Avery to know every little trick and it did not take him long to unlock the door without losing any limbs. He turned to look at Avery, noticing his wand lying unprotected on the armrest of the chair. Black was faster than Draco and grabbed the wood with his free hand before nodding at Draco.

Without a sound Draco slipped into the dark and pulled Black with him, still holding his hand. He was unsure if he would be able to let him go. His fingers felt like they were glued to Black’s hand, but not in an uncomfortable way. Black had to feel something similar because otherwise his thumb would not stroke over the back of Draco’s hand from time to time. Maybe he... Draco shook the thought off. Black was only nervous and did not know what his fingers were doing. Nothing more. But it still felt indescribably good.

Searching the darkness of the garden for a hint of a person, Draco carefully moved forwards. It was raining, heavier than it had a few minutes ago, and the large drops were ensuring that the other guards would procrastinate their next round, remaining under the safety of the roof. Speeding up, Draco pulled Black to the high hedges.

“Behind them you’ll be able to Disapparate,” Draco whispered and cast a charm to open a hole in the hedges, then turning to face Black. “Hurry up, Black. We won’t stay so lucky forever.”

“You don’t want to come with me?” Black asked, apparently truly stunned.

Draco eyes widened at this unexpected question. As soon as he had collected himself he shook his head and tried to pull his hand away. Black grabbed him tightly, nearly crushing his fingers.

“They’ll... No, Voldemort will kill you,” Black said, also placing his other hand on Draco’s, probably because he noticed him shivering at the name. “He’ll find out, Draco. That makes you a traitor.”

“I know that,” Draco replied, eyes focused on an invisible spot next to Black’s ear. The lumps in his throat were back and once again he could not swallow them. “But He won’t find out. The Dark Lord’s not talking to unimportant brats like me.”

“There are a lot more people capable of Legilimency or other ways to find out how I disappeared. Don’t start being stupid,” Black demanded.

Draco snorted. “I already was more than stupid as I helped you escape. Don’t hesitate and ruin everything. Just go!”

Black stared at him in shock as Draco pulled him closer to the hole in the hedges. “But...” No matter how hard Draco tried he could not make Black move, who was physically and mentally stronger. A part of Draco did not want Black to leave him alone again, but he had already named this part a fool and he even had a proof what a bloody idiot he became because of this man. He did not want to stay a naïve fool forever. “If you don’t want to come with me, why did you help me?”

“Because I’m an idiot, we already discussed that,” Draco snapped and pushed at Black, making him stumble backwards, and for a moment he thought the man would go now, but Black grabbed his arm fast as lightning.

“Is this a trap?!” His voice was too loud.

Draco looked hastily around, the by now tumultuous rain making him blink. “Be quiet, you insignificant fool,” Draco hissed and gasped as Black’s fingers grabbed his jaw, forcing him to look back into the grey eyes, now hard as rock again. Black eyed him up, letting his gaze slowly travel over Draco’s entire body, before focusing on his eyes again. He looked friendlier again.

“Insignificant? You risk way too much for that,” Black said, but not with a hint of triumph in his voice. Then again, his curiosity was tangible. “Why would you do that?”

Draco licked his lips, wiping the rain out of his face as he brushed wet strands of hair away. “Because...” He looked into Black’s dark eyes – the night’s fault, not passion or arousal. “Because I...” Raising his hand, he grabbed Black’s collar and dragged him down to press a hard kiss on the other lips. He felt Black stiffen and wanted to pull away, but before he could do so, a hand cupped the side of his neck to hold him in place, forcing him even closer.

Draco was flying. The knowledge that Black... that Sirius had at least once returned his kiss gave him the strength to spread his wings and rose high enough not to let the fear of being caught overshadow his passion. For a moment he could fearlessly cling to Sirius and melt against him, opening his mouth to let Sirius deepen the kiss, arms wrapped around his waist, and Draco was glad that Sirius was strong enough to hold him on his feet, because his knees were weak, his whole body trembling with pure happiness.

The rain was warm, the wind gentle and the night protective. He felt safer than ever before in his life, even as Sirius’ hands slowly loosened their tight hold and came to rest on his hips, before grabbing his hands. He seemed to have trouble breaking the kiss and Draco did not want to help him, but eventually, they parted, panting for breath. Draco’s cheeks flushed when their eyes met and for the first time in his life he still felt good when he lowered his gaze, smiling to the ground.

“Come with me,” Sirius said and lifted Draco’s chin up again before he gently stroked over the reddened cheek. “I’ll protect you.”

Suddenly, Draco became aware of how cold the rain was, how harsh the wind and that the night was only useful to hide this stolen moment. He stepped backwards and watched Sirius’ hand falling to his side, shaking slightly, shaking for the first time that Draco had seen him. It was like he had absorbed Sirius’ strength and just left him as weak and fragile as Draco used to be.

“Then they’ll know for sure that I helped you,” Draco said, still breathlessly. “The failure of my father has disgraced my family. My mother and I are suffering because of him. If I run away like a coward she has to pay. I can’t let this happen... It wouldn’t be right.”

“And what shall I do now? Leaving you here is as good as sending you straight to death,” Sirius almost begged. He wanted Draco to be safe, unconditionally. This had to be a dream. The most beautiful dream in Draco’s life. “I can’t do this.”

“If you don’t do it, it’ll be your fault if they catch both of us,” Draco whispered and pointed at the hole in the hedges. “Go, now!” As Sirius shook his head, Draco pulled out his wand and cast a charm that threw Sirius backwards, through the hedges. With another flick of his wand he closed the hole just as Sirius rose to his feet again. The small leaves covered his pale face and worried eyes, which held sympathy for Draco. That was more than he had ever dared to hope. He gifted Sirius his most honest smile before the hole disappeared completely, and with that, Draco’s smile.

He was freezing and shivering when he walked back to the Manor. Avery was still asleep, although the rain hit him sometimes when the wind blew harsher. Draco let the door open, leaving one more proof how Sirius Black had escaped and blaming Avery for it. That was his revenge for Avery stealing his dessert.

He still had to be careful on his way back, not wanting to risk more than he already did. But his feet moved on their own, so he could linger in memories of the kiss. The taste of Sirius’ lips was long gone, washed away by the rain, but Draco’s lips still prickled with the sensation. It had been worth everything whatever would come now. Draco would always do it again.

A smile tugged on his lips as he walked up the stairs. He felt like a normal teenager at the moment. The happiness that his first love might not be unrequited, at least had a chance to become more, had his higher thought processes blown away. He wanted to hug every man in this house, the house-elves, and the whole world. Had he known how good it felt to do the right thing, he would have made this decision earlier.

Draco let out a sigh before he turned around a corner and simply froze. He had nearly bumped into his uncle, who panted like he had just run through the whole house, his chest rising heavily and he was holding onto the wall for balance.

“Where have you been?” Rodolphus asked, dark eyes hidden behind dishevelled strands of black hair.

Draco stayed calm and shrugged. “I took a shower,” he said just as Rodolphus gazed at his wet hair. “I felt like I needed one.”

“Shower means rain?” Rodolphus reached out a hand and tugged Draco’s shirt from his body.

“I...” Draco gasped as Rodolphus’ hand was suddenly at his throat. With one smooth motion he slammed Draco against the wall and moved so close that his body was pressed tightly against Draco’s, holding him in place.

“Don’t you dare lie to me, Draco. I’ve seen you,” Rodolphus rasped, anger etched in every line Azkaban had left on his face. “You and your new pet, snogging in the rain before parting. Such a dramatic farewell. And that was the last time you’ll seen him, traitor.”

Draco struggled against Rodolphus, trying to dislodge him but he only achieved a tighter grip that made it hard to breathe. “I don’t... I’m not a traitor.”

“You’re not a traitor?” Rodolphus’ laughter was full of madness and his fingers dug deeper into Draco’s throat as he continued guffawing. Draco grabbed his uncle’s wrist and used the second that Rodolphus loosened his grip to take a deep breath. Rodolphus growled and threw Draco to the side, not caring about the painful moan that escaped Draco’s sore throat as he hit the ground, scraping his palms. “You’re a traitor, Draco... How can you disappoint me like that? What do you expect me to do?”

Draco turned around, moving backwards on his backside. “Don’t tell anyone, Uncle Rodolphus,” he said hastily, trying to look convincing. “It’s not what you think...”

“So? What is it then?” Rodolphus bent down to Draco and lifted him up by his arm, anything but gentle. He pulled Draco roughly close and held him just a few inches away, his nose coming closer to Draco’s and with that his mouth. Speaking against Draco’s lips, he said: “You love him.”

Draco shook his head, pressing a hand against Rodolphus’ chest in defence. “He forced me,” Draco said between clenched teeth. It was hard not to show how painful Rodolphus’ grip was; especially after everything that had happened today, Draco had trouble regaining control of his emotions. And Rodolphus did not believe him and laughed again.

“Forced you, yeah?” Almost amused, Rodolphus shook his head. “Sirius Black of all people?”

“You do lots of things to escape death,” Draco replied, again struggling to free himself. “Let me go, Uncle Rodolphus! You know that I can’t fight against an Imperius curse. He got my wand, hexed me and yes, forced me! Why don’t you believe me? My loyalty belongs to the Dark Lord!”

“Ha, you’re a Malfoy. Your loyalty belongs to you and maybe your family, but that’s it. You’re just like that fool of your father!” Rodolphus whirled him around and shoved Draco forward, pushing him in the direction of Draco’s room. “You don’t want to tell me the truth?”

“I didn’t lie,” Draco snapped back and finally got free. He only made it a few feet away before Rodolphus’ arm wrapped around his waist. For a few seconds his uncle carried him, then threw him back to the ground, again ignoring Draco’s sounds of pain.

“Open the door.” Rodolphus’ foot hit him as Draco did not move immediately. “Open it!”

Not looking at his uncle, Draco did as he was told and slipped inside the room before Rodolphus felt the urge to push him again, but sadly he was not fast enough to escape Rodolphus’ hands, which grabbed him again and dragged him along to the bed. With wide eyes Draco watched Rodolphus aiming for the bedside table.

“Don’t...” Draco could not finish his sentence because Rodolphus pushed him roughly to the ground, completely uninterested in whether Draco’s face met the edge of the bedside table.

“Show me your secret, Draco. Now.” Rodolphus folded his arms in front of his chest, looking down at Draco with anger gleaming in his dark eyes. “It’s as good as a confession if you don’t show me. Out of the way.”

Draco whimpered as Rodolphus’ nails scratched over his arm when he pulled him up again, pushing him onto the bed. Before Draco could sit up again Rodolphus had pulled out the bottom drawer and revealed all the pictures Draco had collected. He looked at all of them, let them fall and smashed the drawer as he threw it forcefully on the ground. Draco flinched at the sight of his uncle completely furious. When Rodolphus looked at him, Draco immediately moved to the head of the bed, gulping hard. His entire body was trembling with fear and every glimpse of happiness had simply disappeared.

“Uncle Rodolphus, you don’t understand...” Draco’s voice became lower and lower until it finally died.

“I do understand, Draco. 1993!” Rodolphus pointed at a now crinkled parchment. “This article is from 1993! What in the name of the Dark Lord is wrong with you?!”

“I didn’t know he wasn’t on our side,” Draco replied in a whisper. “I was young and... I didn’t know...”

“But now you do! And still you were helping him! The enemy!” Rodolphus pulled his wand, but his hand started shaking as Draco’s eyes widened in fear. “A traitor... You’re a traitor. I need to... Oh, Draco... What have you done?”

Draco took a deep breath before he spoke in a calmer voice: “You don’t need to tell anyone, Uncle Rodolphus.”

“And then? Next time you’ll help Potter to escape,” Rodolphus said, slowly lowering his wand as Draco shook his head frantically. His voice was full of anger and resentment, but that was not enough for Draco to give up the hope that his uncle still cared for him. Technically, Rodolphus would have already killed him if he was not sympathetic toward his nephew.

“No... I’m not... It’s just a stupid crush. I helped him, because they wanted me to do it... to kill him,” Draco answered, making desperate efforts to convince Rodolphus. “I can’t kill. I’m not a murderer. You know that, Uncle Rodolphus. How can you think I would do something like that because I sympathise with the enemy? You know me. You and me, that’s special. More than a crush.” He hoped that his gulp was inaudible, but Rodolphus could probably feel it anyway because his hands were back at Draco’s throat. Just gentler this time, moving up to his cheeks and cupping them as Rodolphus sat down next to his nephew. Draco could not keep his eyes from shifting to Rodolphus’ wand that lay on the edge of the mattress.

“More than a crush?” Rodolphus’ dark eyes scanned every inch of Draco’s face for the hint of a lie, but apparently he did not find one because he leant closer. Draco held his breath and shut his eyes, waiting for the other mouth to devour him. The thought was absolutely unpleasant but if it helped him he would let his uncle do it.

But Rodolphus never kissed him. Slowly, Draco opened his eyes again and the way Rodolphus’ glowed with anger he was seemingly unable to cover his relief.

“Liar,” Rodolphus rasped and before Draco could even open his mouth he was punched in the face. At first, Draco thought that his uncle had broken his jaw, but the pain and taste of blood in his mouth was not the worst part of his punishment. All of the former affection in Rodolphus’ actions seemed to have vanished as he ripped Draco’s shirt from his shoulders.

“No...” Draco tried to get away but Rodolphus’ arm swung around his waist and pulled him backwards, slamming him onto the mattress. “I don’t want to,” Draco managed to say, his voice not even shaking but full of determination. Sadly, Rodolphus only laughed.

“I’m not asking you for permission.” Rodolphus’ voice was soft but taunting. “If I want to kiss you, I’ll do it.” He did not even hesitate for a second and gave Draco a bruising kiss, plundering his mouth with brutal force. Draco squirmed under him, slamming his fist against Rodolphus’ chest and gasping for breath immediately as Rodolphus released him. “If I want to fuck you, I’ll do it.”

Draco opened his mouth in shock, closing it wordlessly and making Rodolphus grin with that. His grin was nothing but a horrible mask that seemed to cover every prior positive emotion Rodolphus had held for Draco. It looked forced, and the realisation let hope rise in Draco that he just needed to shake his uncle vigorously so that the mask would fall off and everything would be good again.

“No,” Draco gasped and pulled his knees up, but Rodolphus shoved them down again, reaching for Draco’s pants. “No, no, no!” Draco bucked his hips, kicking and slamming to dislodge the other man but his attempts only seemed to amuse Rodolphus.

“Ah, you’re not really trying,” Rodolphus grinned and grabbed Draco’s wrist, just before his fist hit him again, pinning Draco’s thin arm painfully hard on the mattress. “You want this. Deep inside you wanted it the whole time.”

“No!” Draco’s treasury of words seemed to tire Rodolphus now and without hesitation he pressed his hand on Draco’s mouth, still poisoning him with his words. Somehow, Draco was glad that he could not express himself anymore because he had been close to begging, and even during such a moment, a part of him wanted to retain his dignity. He just wished that Rodolphus would press a hand on his own mouth and stop saying these things. Draco did not enjoy this and he did not have to pretend that he did not like it.

Rodolphus’ callused hands moved all over his body, taking all the strength Draco thought he had gotten. He felt weak again, unable to fight back anymore as two fingers invaded him roughly. Leaving Draco no time to adjust, they shoved deep inside until they brushed against something that almost made Draco moan. He pressed his jaw together, biting on his lower lip that was already bloody because Rodolphus had punched him, but now new warm liquid filled his mouth and seemed to entice Rodolphus into kissing him again. Draco let it happen.

This was wrong. It was definitely wrong. Draco did not care about perspective. Whoever thought this was the right way to punish him was a fool. Rodolphus could not be serious. He was not like this. His hot breath and moist lips used to feel good on Draco’s body. Rodolphus would not bite and suck like he did not care about anything but his own pleasure, rutting against Draco’s leg eagerly while preparing him for the girth that was about to come.

Draco stiffened at the size, silent tears running over his cheeks and being kissed away before they could drip on the mattress. As though Rodolphus was not capable to see him crying. And he could be thrusting harder, faster, deeper. Draco knew he could. Rodolphus had always wanted him to enjoy this, but that did not keep him from making Draco scream now until his throat was raw and his voice hoarse.

Pleasure rose warm in his groin and Draco did not have the strength to fight it. He rather concentrated on the shame that ran together with the other confusing feeling through his veins.

“You like it, Draco,” Rodolphus purred into his ear, nudging against something inside Draco that almost erased the pain. “Stop pretending. Stop – ah, I wanted to do this for so long.”

Draco reached out his hands, blindly scratching over every bit of heated skin he could reach. Rodolphus moaned but not from pain. He sounded more like a wild animal each time he thrust his hips forward, increasing the sharp pain and knocking all air out of Draco’s lungs. That was not his uncle anymore. Draco sobbed bitterly as he felt Rodolphus release into him. It was still not the end. Rodolphus continued to thrust into him and did not react when Draco hit him again, pushing against him, scratching over the other man’s face and chest. He just stopped when Draco whimpered and opened his eyes.

Slowing down, Rodolphus looked at him, his lips curled back in a snarl and sweat glistened on his brow. Draco’s nails had drawn welts over the pale skin that was visible beneath the open shirt. Rodolphus had not even cared to fully undress, his trousers still hanging around his ankles. Draco closed his eyes again.

“Go... go...” Draco sobbed and cleared his throat, but it only hurt and his voice stayed hoarse. “Go away,” he managed eventually and cried out as Rodolphus pulled out right away, as though he had been burned by Draco’s words. “Leave me alone, you... you bastard...” Draco turned on his side and curled up into a small ball. Tears had dried on his cheeks but there was already new wetness prickling in his eyes.

“Sad, isn’t it?” Rodolphus’ voice came from behind, sounding exhausted but satisfied. “Your oh-so-well-protected-virginity lost forever. Black must think you repulsive. Especially after you’ll be always mine now.”

Draco had not wanted to cry again before Rodolphus had left, but he could not hold the tears back any longer. He pressed his face into the pillow, muffling the sobs though he could not drown Rodolphus’ voice.

“He won’t touch you again. Now you’re so dirty nobody will ever touch you again. You’re a traitor and a bloody whore, not to mention that you’re completely useless. Too much compassion is only one of your countless weaknesses. You disgust me.” Rodolphus walked to the door, the echo of his footsteps filling Draco’s head so that he had trouble understanding the next words. “I won’t tell anyone. For that you will never even look at me again.” The tone of Rodolphus’ voice had changed again, reminding Draco of those countless hours he had talked to his uncle, and once again a spark of hope warmed his stomach.

Draco gazed over his shoulder, hoping to find his uncle standing near the door but it was just the shadow of that monster, so he turned away again, granting Rodolphus his wish. He shivered as his blanket was magically lifted and suddenly covered him, shortly afterwards he heard the door falling close.

His room was completely soaked in darkness and because of the curtains Draco could not tell how long he stayed in his bed. But he did not care anyway... Nobody came to him, nobody cared about him, so why should he?


Sirius slipped through the hedges and gazed up to the huge building that was almost invisible in the darkness of the night. Coming back was maybe not the best idea, but it was definitely a better one than leaving that poor boy behind. His bad conscience had become so unbearably heavy that he could not be happy about still being alive. Sirius had used the first opportunity to loosen Harry’s tight grip around him and ignored Moony’s voice in his head that kept telling him what a stupid idea it was to step straight into the snakepit. But as nobody wanted to help him, he had to do this alone.

Even after Sirius had told Harry several times who had helped him to escape, he was still not at all fond of Draco Malfoy, and if he knew that Sirius had stolen his Invisibility Cloak, he would probably never cling to him again. But the boy had helped him, unconditionally; he had to be different from this bunch of bastards. And if that bunch of bastards found out about what the boy had done then they would kill him, and Sirius could never live happily ever after if this was his fault.

It was not raining anymore and Sirius was glad because then he could sneak into the house without leaving visible traces. The door to the winter garden still stood open but Avery was gone. That was certainly not a good sign. If they had already noticed that Sirius was gone they would search all over the Manor and outside, which would make this task even harder.

Sirius heard voices coming from the entrance hall and entered the room silently, but almost got hit by a curse from his cousin. Bellatrix was furious. But her anger was focused on Avery, who desperately tried to duck and jump away whenever she aimed at him. He was doing a good job. Avery had always been outstanding at acting like a stupid rabbit. That gave Sirius some more time to get to Draco. With all these noises around him he would have stayed unnoticed without the Invisibility Cloak.

There was a problem and he had to admit that he had not thought about this properly before coming back to Malfoy Manor. He did not know where Draco’s room was or how to find him. Convincing him to come with him was a different thing Sirius had not thought about too explicitly either. But Draco could not believe that he was still safe here. That was more than a little naïve. And it was more than a little naïve to come here without a concrete plan.

Sirius was already on top of the staircase when he heard fast footsteps from behind. Turning his head over the shoulder he looked straight at his other cousin, Narcissa, who was wearing a dressing gown and looked rather like she had just been thrown out of bed. Her blond hair flew after her and almost hit Sirius, who leant back in the last second and was close to falling over the banister. The big, fearful eyes and the way she stormed target-oriented down the hallway caught Sirius’ attention. Narcissa had always been utterly worried about her son, as Snape had often mentioned during Order meetings. Most likely, she was on the way to her son to protect him from the black sheep of the family.

Sirius followed her until he could not hear Bellatrix’ screams and curses anymore. As soon as Narcissa thought herself unseen she stopped dragging the sides of her robe together and hurried around the corner in a flurry of silk. The next thing Sirius heard was a high-pitched scream and a loud bang.

“Watch your steps,” a harsh voice growled and when Sirius stepped around the corner, Rodolphus Lestrange was glaring down at Narcissa, not attempting to help her get to her feet again.

“Where’s Draco?” Narcissa pulled herself up, holding onto the wall for balance. Her eyes darted towards the nearest door and then back to Rodolphus. “Have you heard what happened, Rodolphus?”

Sirius tiptoed around Narcissa and froze as he became the new aim for Rodolphus’ drop-dead glare. For a moment the dark eyes focused directly on him before they scanned the shadows and shifted to the door that had to lead to Draco’s room.

Rodolphus growled enquiringly. He seemed to be in a very bad mood, probably because someone had woken him up, as he looked paler than usual and his hair was ruffled and slightly sweaty. But he was still wearing his clothes and not a pyjama, which was rather weird, but after all, this was Bellatrix’ husband – he had to be weird.

“Sirius disappeared. Avery seemed to have fallen asleep and he escaped through the winter garden – most likely. There might be a chance that he’s still here,” Narcissa explained to Rodolphus. “You need to go downstairs before Bellatrix destroys the whole house instead of searching for him.”

“And why are you here?” Rodolphus grabbed Narcissa’s arm and dragged her along, although she tried everything to hold onto the wall, nails scratching over the tapestry.

“I need to look after my son,” she exclaimed and jerked her arm free, hastily stepping backwards. “Who knows what Sirius will do to him if he finds him asleep and unarmed? He can’t even defend himself!”

“Oh, don’t play games with me, Narcissa. You’d be glad if Black gets your son out of here, I know that.” Rodolphus needed only two steps to grab Narcissa’s shoulder and pull her away from Draco’s door. “You’re scared. Scared that he’ll end up like Lucius,” Rodolphus rasped against Narcissa’s cheek, holding her so close that she was simply unable to move. “You would do anything to prevent him from this fate and I doubt that this bloody heroic Gryffindor would say ‘No’ if you tried to convince him that no one else could save your beloved son, eh? I won’t let this happen. You’re coming with me.”

“Rodolphus, how dare you?” Narcissa struggled to dislodge her brother-in-law but as she seemed to be thin enough that Harry could carry her, she had not the hint of a chance. “I want to see if my son is safe!”

“He is. Don’t worry. Guess which room I just left? I made sure he’s safe.” Rodolphus ignored Narcissa’s desperate attempts and pulled her around the corner. Sirius could hear them discussing all the way back but that did not stop him from turning to Draco’s door. If he told the boy that his mother wanted this he would definitely come with him. It was the best decision.

Pushing the door open, Sirius slipped inside the shadows of Draco’s room, unable to take in the sight of it, his eyes searched for the boy. A shock of blond hair was gleaming slightly in the darkness and like a light in the dark it guided Sirius towards the bed. Draco was apparently asleep, face hidden in his pillow and body completely covered under the blanket as though trying to hide.

Sirius cleared his throat and when he received no reaction, he pulled the Invisibility Cloak off, sitting down on the edge of Draco’s bed. Tentatively, he placed a hand on Draco’s shoulder and shook him slightly.

“Draco?” His voice was drowned by the painful noise he elicited from Draco just by shaking. Sirius immediately pulled his hand away and balled it into a fist, eyeing Draco up while the boy slowly rolled onto his back, breathing heavily.

“A... dream?” Draco’s eyelids seemed heavy and he closed and opened them in slow motion. “Must be a dream...” Draco sounded as though he had screamed his throat raw.

“It’s not a dream, Draco,” Sirius said, reaching to pull the blanket away but Draco’s hands clutched onto it. “I came to get you out of here. You’re not safe.”

“You’re a little late,” Draco said in a whisper. “Must be a dream...”

“Did someone hurt you?” Sirius pulled out his wand and cast a Lumos, wishing he had not as he illuminated the deep red marks on Draco’s throat, collarbone and shoulders. This time, he managed it to pull the blanket away, only revealing more bruises on his chest, even on his hips where they seemed to be worst. A part of him was glad that Draco yanked the blanket up again before his gaze went even lower.

“Don’t...” Draco’s voice was too weak to finish the sentence and the sob that he could not hold back did not make anything easier. He rolled back into a small ball, but Sirius had seen enough to curse himself for leaving the boy behind. The light of his wand illuminated dried blood on the blanket and whatever else glistened there, too, he did not want to know.

“Can you move?” Sirius asked cautiously, trying to keep his eyes on Draco’s face, which had reddened slightly. When Draco shook his head, Sirius stood up. “Then I’ll carry you.” Again, Draco shook his head.

"I can't... leave..." Draco sighed sleepily and his eyes fluttered close. "I'm not... a traitor..."

"Stupid boy," Sirius growled and looked helplessly around, eventually Summoning Draco a robe. He lifted Draco's torso up and pulled the robe over his head, ignoring the weak attempts to push him away. Draco was constantly muttering about being weak, being a traitor and not being worth Sirius' return, but his voice was so low that Sirius could easily ignore it and focus on wrapping Draco up in the blanket.

He lifted Draco on his back and pulled the Invisibility Cloak over them. Draco's head was lying on his shoulder, gladly. Otherwise, the Cloak would have been too small for them and he did not want his feet to be the perfect target for Bellatrix' anger.

“Please, be quiet, Draco. I don’t want to use a Silencing Charm on you, okay?” Sirius looked over his shoulder, his nose brushing against Draco’s temple. The white-blond hair covered Draco’s eyes and Sirius searched fruitlessly for a sign that Draco had heard him. He had stopped muttering and the way he literally hung on Sirius’ back, dangerously close to just falling off, ensured that he had fallen asleep.

As fast he could without dropping Draco, Sirius hurried towards the door, closing it with his foot. His heart was pounding against his ribs, because of the fear of being caught and the knowledge that he was exposing Draco to more danger, and because he was angry. Angry with himself for being so incredibly stupid to allow Draco to go back, and angry with that bastard Lestrange. Of course, he had been in Draco’s room to make sure he was safe from the oh-so-evil-Sirius. If he had been alone, Sirius would kill Rodolphus Lestrange now, but his priority was to make sure that nothing would happen to Draco again.

Sirius was about to enter the entrance hall as a half a dozen Death Eaters trampled around the corner. Pressing himself and Draco as tight as possible against the wall, Sirius held his breath and hoped that luck would stay on his side. At the end of the corridor, the group split into two pairs and one was definitely on the way to Draco’s room. He did not have much time left to get out of there.

Sirius tightened his grip around Draco’s thighs and hurried towards the staircase. The front door stood open. The rain had started again and the stormy wind blew gallons of water into the entrance hall. It was inviting to just run outside, but it could also be a trap. Sirius hesitated for a moment, which was nearly his end, because the harsh wind tugged on the Invisibility Cloak, almost ripping it off Sirius’ head. Panic rose in his mind. He needed to hurry up and, well, if it was a trap, then he still had the advantage of invisibility, a possibility no one was considering.

The incessant rain, in the end, erased all his camouflage, because even invisible he could not disappear and the water ran in cascades over his body, revealing his shape. His only remaining friend was the darkness, but as soon as he thought of this last spark of hope lightning lit up the sky, followed by deep crackles of thunder. So much for being lucky...


Sirius cursed under his breath and looked over the shoulder. That bloody bouncing bunny Avery had noticed him and was pointing at him, before raising his hand to hex him – and Sirius thought it was useful to steal a Death Eater’s wand, but most likely Avery owned a little trophy hall with wands from his victims.

“There he is! He’s Disillusioned!” And luckily, Avery could not concentrate on screaming like a banshee and aim at the same time. His curse missed Sirius by miles and gave him enough time to run away. They might have noticed him but it was still hard to see him in the darkness, although it was obvious that he was running towards the garden gates.

Black smoke appeared right before the exit and a person blocked his way.

“Sirius! Where are you, Cousin?” Bellatrix searched her environment for hints only a short time before blindly firing curses in all directions. Sirius had trouble jumping out of the way with Draco’s weight on his back. “Don’t want to leave without saying goodbye, do you? Poor manners... very poor...”

Her next curse hit Sirius’ shoulder, ripping the Cloak off his body. He almost let Draco fall, but held onto him for dear life no matter how stinging the pain in his shoulder was, not to mention the fact that he had dropped James’ Invisibility Cloak. That Draco was now revealed to the eyes of everyone might not be that bad, because suddenly a high-pitched scream drowned the roaring thunder.

“Bella, no!” Narcissa Apparated right next to her sister and grabbed her wrist, so that the next curse flew skyward. “He has Draco! He kidnapped my son!”

Sirius did not care for Bellatrix’ answer and ran straight towards the gate, taking advantage of Narcissa holding on tight to her sister, who frantically tried to dislodge her. He tackled Bellatrix with his unharmed shoulder and made her and Narcissa fall into the mud. As soon as Sirius had stepped through the gates he turned on the spot and Disapparated with a loud bang, but did not stop for a second or think himself in safety as long until he was inside the Grimmauld Place.

Gladly, someone opened the door at the right moment, giving Sirius the opportunity to stumble inside his home. He had never been gladder to see Severus Snape.

“What the... Black?” Snape slammed the door shut again, following Sirius, who was hurrying down the long corridor to the hall. “Black, aren’t you supposed to be... Who are you carrying?”

Sirius moved towards a couch that stood next to the staircase, hopefully not waiting to be released from a bunch of Doxys. He let Draco fall on the couch and slumped down next to him, trying to recover his breath, while Snape tried to retrieve his ability to speak while he stared at Draco with wide eyes.

“What is going on here?” Remus left the kitchen because of the loud noises and dropped his cup as he noticed Sirius. That seemed to galvanise Snape, who turned his head to the steaming puddle on the carpet and let out an annoyed sigh.

“Fantastic, Lupin,” he snarled but Remus did not pay him or the puddle any attention. “Yes, don’t worry. It’s not like Wolfsbane Potion is hard work.”

“Are you insane, Sirius?” Remus’ eyes flicked towards Draco but hastily back to Sirius and focused on his shoulder. “Are you insane?”

“I’m a little breathless,” Sirius panted and it did not help that Remus pointed at his shoulder to show him that flaps of crimson flesh hung over his forearm, revealing silvery shimmering bone. “Ugh... gross.”

“Indeed,” Snape said, raising his eyebrows.

Remus scowled at him. “Would you mind helping me fix this, Severus?”

“I would,” Snape replied and looked to Draco, who was about to roll off the couch. Something made Snape move closer and lift Draco’s legs up, so that the boy came to lie safely on the couch. “Is he hurt?”

“Don’t touch him,” Sirius growled and shoved Remus away with his unscathed arm. “Just go back and tell Voldemort’s people that I’ve kidnapped him to... what do I know. Because hostages are always useful. You certainly have a better idea.”

“Sirius, can’t you keep still?” Remus sighed heavily and rubbed his temple until Sirius finally stopped moving. “Thank you.”

Snape shook his head. “Has a Flobberworm eaten your brain, Black? It is most likely a trap that Draco helped you to escape, so that he’d earn your sympathy – like he obviously did. That you would try to... well, save him was very predictable. Now, he can move around in the headquarters as he likes, slowly gaining your trust. Lupin, anyway, trusts anything with a heartbeat.”

“That’s bullshit,” Sirius said and yelped as Snape opened his mouth to respond. Remus had magically removed Sirius’ flesh to its rightful place without even giving him a small warning.

“Sorry,” Remus mumbled with a small smile, while running his wand over the still bleeding lines of the wound. “I thought it was better to take advantage of you being distracted.”

“Whatever...” Sirius ran the other hand through his hair and turned to look at Draco. “He helped me and I’m sure that at least Rodolphus Lestrange found out. I couldn’t leave him there. Look at him...”

“Lestrange?” Snape frowned at Sirius. “Rodolphus Lestrange is one of the few people who would never hurt Draco. He’s utterly fond of him. This must be a trap.”

“He seemed to be... too fond of him.” Sirius avoided the eyes of both Remus and Snape, reaching out to brush the hair from Draco’s closed eyes. “I’m taking him upstairs. We’ll discuss this tomorrow.” He shoved Remus away from his not completely healed arm and glared at Snape. “And I don’t want to hear one more word about this being a trap. He’ll stay with me. He’s my cousin. I’ll protect him from now on.”

“Look at that... As soon as Potter doesn’t need you anymore, you seek out something new to act out your need to play the hero,” Snape sneered. “I won’t go to the Manor at the moment. Considering Bellatrix has probably lost her mind and might kill everything that dares to come close to her, I would like to speak with Albus first.”

“Yeah, just don’t come close to Draco,” Sirius said angrily and for a moment he thought Snape wanted to undo all of Remus work by cursing Sirius again. Anger let blood rise to his face, painting the pale throat red, and Sirius’ favourite vein in Snape’s temple had once again started pulsating almost violently. “Precautionary measures, of course. You’re too valuable to reveal your identity as a spy.”

Snape snorted at him and turned to the kitchen. “Lupin. This time you’ll drink the potion in my presence.”

“Sirius, are you okay?” Remus asked while rising to his feet. Sirius’ nod did not seem to be enough to erase the worry lines on his face, but as Sirius could lift Draco up without grimacing, Remus sighed. “Let me know if he needs anything. I’ll look after you later.” He smiled at Sirius and followed Snape into the kitchen.

Finally alone, Sirius let out a painful moan, but did not look at his shoulder and focused on Draco in his arms. He looked so peaceful when he was asleep that one could hardly imagine the injuries waiting to be healed beneath the layers of fabric. Fortunately, Remus had not insisted on looking at Draco. Sirius did not want to show anyone what had happened to Draco. He was sure that Draco did not even want him to see him in this state.

“I’m so sorry,” Sirius whispered.


He had done something utterly wrong, and with it, he had destroyed everything. Draco would never feel anything other than hatred and disgust for him, if they ever saw each other again.

Rodolphus swallowed hard, clinging to the frame of the door as he took in the sight of Draco’s room in the light of the midday sun, which was dimmed because of the rain and the dark clouds covering most of the sky. Draco’s bed was empty but there were still spots of blood on the twisted sheets. The last night was like a blur and Rodolphus did not remember being that rough with Draco.

Maybe it was better that Draco was gone.

But he was gone with Black.

Rodolphus shook his head but could not dislodge the thought of his Draco with that bastard.

He had hoped that his obsession would disappear with Draco, then he realised that even his betrayal had not changed how he felt about his nephew, leaving him with nothing but guilt. If he had been able to control his anger, Draco would still be with him. Nobody would have known about what he had done, like Draco had said. They could have...

Rodolphus slammed his fist against the doorframe. No, this was not his fault. Black had seduced Draco into doing all this and he would pay for that. And then Draco had to come back home, back to him, and everything would be good again.


“Hmm?” Rodolphus turned around, closing the door to Draco’s room before Avery had reached him. “What is it?”

“Severus is here,” Avery said and motioned Rodolphus to follow.

Hastily, Rodolphus grabbed Avery’s arm, holding him back. “News from the Order? Is Black –”

“I don’t know!” Avery pushed Rodolphus away and smoothed his robe before heading back to the entrance hall. “That’s what Snape’s here for, right?” He slowed down, waiting for Rodolphus to catch up and nudging him slightly – Avery would have been harsher if he could, but Bellatrix’ anger still made his body ache with agonising pain. “You’re worried because of the little one, right?”

“I am angry,” Rodolphus growled, but never thought about revealing why he was angry to Avery. He was born to lie. It was the easiest thing to do. He did not need some sudden pseudo moralizers to tell him everything he already knew. It had been wrong what he had done and it was his fault that Draco had not fought Black, letting that oh-so-brave Gryffindor do what he did best: play the hero.

“Not at me, I hope,” Avery said with a sigh and sped up again, hurrying towards the living room while mumbling, “I’m sure they won’t hurt him. No need to worry... We’ll get him back, anyway...”

Rodolphus stilled like the guilt had suddenly built a wall to stop him. He gulped hard, trying to swallow painful lumps. They would get Draco back, sooner or later. Most likely hurting or maybe even killing Black when they did, because he certainly thought he was Draco’s bodyguard now.

But Draco was not allowed to come back. Rodolphus’ feelings for him had gotten out of control. He... It was him who was not allowed to ever see Draco again. He had to bear the consequences for his obsession with doing everything to protect Draco from himself...

...and making sure that Draco’s obsession could peacefully turn into something real.


The morning sun hurt even through his eyelids, but they were too heavy to open them right away. Draco moaned and wished he had never woken when he felt a burning pain as he rolled to the side, away from the light. He felt like a dozen Cruciatus curses had hit him, every inch of his skin throbbing and burning.

“Hey, Draco,” a hoarse voice said and soon afterwards warm fingers brushed the hair out of his eyes. “Open your eyes, come on.” Draco did as the voice told him and blinked until he could see clearly. But apparently he was not awake yet, because his face was only inches away from Sirius Black’s, which was absolutely impossible.

“What...” Draco licked his chapped and dry lips, before rubbing over his eyes. “Where am I?” he asked while looking around. The room was clean but impersonal. A wardrobe, bedside table and a chair next to the window, was the only furniture. There were two doors, one right behind Sirius and one next to the wardrobe. The latter stood slightly open and Draco could see into a bathroom.

“You’re at Grimmauld Place,” Sirius said and Draco looked back at him, pulling the blanket automatically up to his chin although Sirius kept his eyes focused on Draco’s. He still felt so vulnerable, not even knowing what Sirius had seen of Draco’s aching body. “I was extremely worried, Draco. You slept for almost two days. Are you hungry?”

“Grimmauld Place?” Draco followed Sirius’ index finger, which pointed at a tray with a sandwich and a glass of water. Somehow, Draco remembered how he had brought Sirius a similar tray, so maybe he was in a similar situation. “Am I a prisoner?”

Sirius eyes widened and he rose from the ground, sitting on the edge of Draco’s bed. “No, of course not. Can’t you remember anything?” He tilted his head and sighed as Draco shook his head. “That day, I came back to get you. And it was the right thing to do, because they found out that you had helped me and they hurt you.”

Draco’s eyes had found the bandages that were visible beneath Sirius’ T-shirt. “They hurt you...” Like in trance, he reached out a hand to touch the soft white cotton, but froze immediately when Sirius grabbed his hand, squeezing his fingers lightly. “You got hurt because of me? Why did you do that? You don’t know me...”

“You got hurt because of me. I think we’re more than even,” Sirius said but his smile was almost sad, making Draco look away and pulling his fingers away. “Draco, I –” Sirius cleared his throat as Draco rolled onto the other side, turning his back to Sirius. “Who hurt you, Draco? Lestrange? Did he do this to you?”

“Why did you come back?” Draco’s heart was beating fast just because Sirius was close to him. The right answer and he would believe that there was at least something worth living for, although he was now stigmatized as a traitor.

“Because you helped me,” Sirius answered, making Draco’s heart stop for a second, which was sadly not long enough to just die. “Tell me, please. I know he was angry with you –”

Draco sniffed and pulled the blanket away, slowly trying to sit up. “Uncle Rodolphus at least knew with whom he was angry.” He jerked his arm away as Sirius tried to help him, scowling over his shoulder. “You don’t know me!”

Sirius looked stunned, his hands still stretched out to Draco but they did not try to touch him again. Tears made Draco’s eyes burn and his bottom lip shook until he bit down hard on it, drawing blood with his teeth. As Sirius grabbed his chin to make him stop, Draco looked away, unable to hold back his tears.

“You... saved me because you thought you owed me something, very honourable, Black, but it doesn’t change the fact that I didn’t want it,” Draco said in a strangely calm voice. “I don’t have anything else.” He hiccupped at the attempt to swallow a sob, eyes shifting towards the ceiling. “I’m... Now I’m officially a traitor and can never go back...”

“Confused little boy...” Sirius moved closer, arms wrapping around Draco and pulling him close against the broad chest. Draco stiffened, but although he wanted nothing more than to shove Black away he was unable to move. “If you had stayed you would have ended up dead. That would’ve made your mother sad and by staying alive you keep her happy.”

Draco slowly raised his chin, having trouble remembering what he had wanted to say as he met Sirius’ gaze. “You’re talking to me like I’m a child...” The memories of that night made Draco shut his eyes tightly, breathing heavily to get rid of the pictures. “I’m not a child anymore... I was so stupid.” He sobbed and slammed his fist against Sirius’ chest before digging his fingers into the fabric of the light shirt, pressing his face against Sirius’ shoulder. “I destroyed everything!”

“It’s not your fault,” Sirius said while stroking comfortingly over Draco’s back, rocking him back and forth until he stopped sobbing so bitterly, only sniffling a little. “You did the right thing.”

“Why...” Draco looked up again, blinking nervously when Sirius wiped the tears off his cheeks and came dangerously close to Draco’s mouth. “Why does it hurt so much to do the right thing?”

“Because nobody would do the wrong thing if it was the harder way. Right and wrong are pretty much like hard and simple, still depending on perspective.” Sirius sighed directly against Draco’s right eye, making him blink again.

“So... Hurting me... was that hard for my uncle?” Draco pressed his lips to a firm line and looked away, shaking his head before Sirius could answer. “Forget it. What’s on that sandwich?”

“Don’t you dare thinking that it was right,” Sirius said, ignoring Draco’s attempt to change the topic. “Concentrate on what is right from your perspective. Definitely decreases the headache.”

The corner of Draco’s mouth slowly moved upwards and Sirius brushed his finger over that small smile, before leaning towards the tray. Draco grabbed his arm and pulled him backwards, pressing himself against Sirius again, before the other man could say anything. It was comfortably warm surrounded by Sirius’ arms and he felt safe, but he had also felt this way with his uncle, who now made his stomach turn by just appearing in his head, resembling more that monster in the shadows than the man who had once tried to help him.

Sirius went back to stroking over Draco’s back and sides, but sometimes his hands went too far down over the small of Draco’s, which made him want to shove Sirius away. If he trusted him, he would only get disappointed again, he would get hurt again. He should not search for Sirius’ warmth, but it felt so good and he had wanted it for so long...

“When I was thirteen...” Draco licked his lips and leant back to look Sirius in the eyes, gulping hard but scraping together all the courage he needed for his confession. It felt hard, so it had to be the right thing to do. “When I was thirteen, I was obsessed with this man, who I thought was the Dark Lord’s right-hand man. I collected every article and picture about him, even hoping I would meet him after he escaped Azkaban, so that I could help him and with this earn his affection. But I realised that he was nothing like I imagined, just to... to develop a real crush on him.”

Sirius’ expression was blank and he simply stared at Draco as if his feelings had not been obvious the whole time. Draco clung to the hope that this was just the reaction of a typical, stupid Gryffindor who was too insensitive for subtle declarations. If Sirius did not want him, he might not end up hurt, but he would lose the only spark of light in this hopeless darkness that laid in wait to swallow him entirely.

“After almost five years just dreaming of him, I finally met him. I met you, Sirius, and I risked so much for you. The only thing that still makes me struggle about whether it was worth it is...” Draco took a deep breath. “I know you don’t know me. The only reason why you worry about me is guilt, but maybe... there’s a chance that you and me can become more.”

Sirius’ eyes were full of pity and this was certainly not the reaction Draco had hoped for – and it was not what he wanted. He wanted something that was real, otherwise he could have forced Sirius with a curse or taken advantage of his guilt, but for once, Draco wanted something that was built upon honesty.

Draco pulled away from Sirius and raised a hand in defence before the other man could say anything. “Forget it. You must think me repulsive. Of course you don’t want to...”

“I don’t,” Sirius said and ran a hand through his black hair when Draco snorted. “I never left this room, Draco. I wouldn’t have done this if I thought you were repulsive. You’re not. You’re a brave young man and deserve everyone’s respect for what you’ve done.”

Draco crossed his arms before his stomach and grimaced. “Liar... Stupidity doesn’t deserve respect.” He turned around and slumped into the pillows, pulling the blanket over his body. “Leave me alone,” he said as Sirius tried to formulate a proper sentence. “Just go away.”

“I want you to eat, understood?” Sirius placed a hand on Draco’s shoulder but did not try it again after Draco jerked immediately away. “If you need anything. I’m either downstairs in the kitchen or one floor higher in my room. There’s... uhm, a plate with my name on the door.” With that, he left Draco alone, but Draco did not plan to stay in bed. As soon as the door had closed behind Sirius, Draco slipped out of the bed and moaned. Saving him was one thing, but healing him seemed to have been too much work.

Draco examined the pyjama he was wearing. It was too big, sleeves and trouser legs hanging over his hands and feet until he rolled them up. Apparently, someone had healed him. There were no bruises on his wrists anymore and as he stood up to pull down the trousers he found his flawless, pale skin there, unharmed and looking completely untouched. As if everything had been a nightmare.

A smile tugged on Draco’s lips. A dream, of course. It had been a dream. Uncle Rodolphus would never do something like this and Draco’s expectation of being punished had led to a horrible dream – and dreams are but shadows.

Draco nodded to himself and scuffed his feet over the ground as he dragged himself to the bathroom. Why did he feel so exhausted? Because Sirius had not been careful, probably letting him fall when he had ‘saved’ him. Gryffindors and their annoying need to help anything with a heartbeat.

Breathing heavily, Draco closed the door of the bathroom behind him and slowly sank to the ground. Everything was good. He needed to believe that if he did not want to become mad. If he started thinking about his mother he would only feel bad, and after all, Narcissa was not in danger as long as Aunt Bellatrix was sane enough to remember that they were related. Everything was good. Draco only needed to make the best of his situation.

If Sirius did not want him, Draco would show him what he missed. This was his chance. Never ever would he come this close to the man of his dreams again and if he let him go, he would regret it for the rest of his life.

Draco pulled himself up again, searching for a mirror and staggering towards the sink. He held onto it as he eyed himself up, realising that he looked too ill to be considered attractive. His skin was ashen and there were dark circles under his eyes, not to mention his greasy hair. Needless to say that Sirius had lied when he had said that he did not think Draco was repulsive. He had tried to be nice but the truth was that Draco seemed to have lost all of his charisma and aura. A Malfoy should not look this weak and fragile.

Draco turned to the shower and undressed. He was handsome enough to make two Sirius happy and he would make sure that Sirius would understand that, whatever the cost...

Draco stepped inside the shower, turning on the water and wondering how hard he needed to rub to get rid of this strange feeling to being incredibly dirty.


Kreacher was muttering curses behind him, but whatever he said, it would not stop Sirius from scrubbing the kitchen table. Not even Moony, who was way better company than Kreacher, could drag his attention from the table. Sirius was sure that he would lose his mind when he stopped distracting himself somehow.

Since he was injured, he had been locked up at Grimmauld Place and unable to accompany anyone on a mission, not to mention that Harry would not have wanted him to. Harry was angry because he could not forget his antipathies for Draco and bringing the ‘enemy’ into their house seemed to be as good as betrayal to Harry. The boy was certainly not the enemy. He was a confused, messed-up child that had spent too much time with that crazy bitch Bellatrix.

“Padfoot, you don’t need to scrub the wood off just because you cannot believe that a teenager can be in love with you,” Remus said, lifting his cup of tea up as Sirius moved to scrub that place on the table.

“He’s not in love,” Sirius growled, wishing he had never told Remus what Draco had said to him. Then he might have been able to forget this bullshit, as Remus would never talk about anything else – at least for the next couple of days. “He’s obsessed. Obsessed with an image he painted of me over the years, starting with the man you once thought I could be, too. Me, working for Voldemort? That’s so bloody pathetic. It’s just worse to have a crush on someone like this. The boy’s crazy. Why didn’t you tell me that?”

“What? That he has a Sirius Black collection in his room? You needed to worry if I could tell you more about that,” Remus chuckled, obviously amused by Sirius’ behaviour. “Draco Malfoy never talked about things that truly affected him. Especially not to me. I tried, you can believe that, Sirius. I always thought that this superficial behaviour was just to cover something... Kind of like with James. Walking around like he owns the school and –”

“Hey, don’t compare him to James, Moony. That’s nonsense,” Sirius interrupted and slammed his sponge on the table, before drying the wood with his wand.

“Not really...” Remus tried to hide his smile with taking a sip of his tea. “Draco is a spoilt, arrogant and prejudiced boy, who could have been a brilliant student if he hadn’t thought it was uncool to raise his hand in class. Now, tell me that this doesn’t remind you of –”

“Moony, are you trying to make this even harder for me? How shall I deal with him if I try to find similarities to James?” Sirius sat down on the now dried table and sighed. “Honestly, you can do such comparison things with everybody. He probably resembles you somehow too.” Remus’ look made Sirius roll his eyes. “Okay, not a very good example, but that’s not my problem anyway.”

“I don’t see your problem,” Remus said with a shrug. “You risked your life for him. Don’t tell me that you don’t like him.”

Shaking his head, Sirius pressed a hand against his forehead. “I barely talked to him. Everything I know about him... I heard from Harry or you, sometimes Snivellus. And the latter wouldn’t like him so much if he were anything like James, just so you know.”

Remus raised his hands in defence. “I never said that they’re personality twins. Just that Draco obviously has some traits that could affect you.” No longer able to suppress a chuckle, Remus placed his cup on the table, ignoring Sirius’ scowl. “He’s also a handsome young man, don’t tell me you haven’t notice that.”

“Shall I be glad that he thinks about me under the shower?” Sirius ignored that Remus gazed over his shoulder and smiled friendly. “He’s a bloody child, and to say nothing of the fact that he doesn’t know me, he has been raped. I will never touch him!”

Remus gifted him a warning look and stood up, reaching out a hand to the door. “Draco, he didn’t –”

Sirius’ eyes widened in shock as Draco’s voice muttered softly, “I understand.” Sirius slipped off the table and turned to look at Draco, who looked even paler than usual. His hands were shaking, almost dropping the plate he had carried down, now putting it on the counter, so that he could ball his hands into fists. “I’m going back upstairs.”

“You haven’t even touched the food,” Remus said, while Sirius stood frozen on the spot, silently begging for his feet to finally move and catch up with Draco, who hurried away, disappearing as fast as he had appeared. “Oh, Sirius...” Folding his arms in front of his chest, Remus turned to face Sirius and shook his head disapprovingly. “Are you just going to stand there, now? Go after him. Prove that you’re not the embodiment of insensitivity.”

Sirius gulped hard. “Maybe it’s better if you –”

“No.” Remus cleared his throat and took a step backwards. “I need to go in my cage. The full moon, if you can remember.”

“Yeah, yeah... Suddenly, you’re in a rush,” Sirius grumbled and waved at Remus, who offered him a smile.

Taking a deep breath, Sirius left the kitchen and climbed up the stairs, only to find Draco’s room empty. He already wanted to leave again, but the sudden noise of water coming from the shower made him turn around again. Sirius hesitated, fearing that he might be invading Draco’s privacy if he just stepped in, but on the other hand, he did not want to leave without apologising.

Clearing his throat, Sirius called for Draco and knocked, but did not receive an answer. He knocked again, pressing his ear against the door. Did he hear sobs or was that only the water?

“Draco, I’m coming in,” Sirius warned, before pushing the door open. He peered into the room and wished he could have been relieved that Draco was still dressed, but the way he sat there on the ground beneath the shower, knees pulled up to his chest and rocking slightly back and forth, was nothing one could feel relief about.

“Fuck, I’m so sorry,” Sirius managed to say when Draco looked up, staring at him out of tear-filled eyes. Water ran over his face and washed the tears away, but Draco’s eyes stayed reddened. He sniffed and pressed his forehead against his knees, folding his hands over his head.

Sirius hastened to Draco and turned off the water, before falling to his knees. He grabbed Draco and tried to pull him close, but he only received punches against his chest for that.

“Don’t touch me,” Draco hissed and stared at Sirius out of big eyes. “I thought it was a dream. A dream... a nightmare... Why did you... I was okay. Everything was good. Until you...”

“I never meant...” Sirius swallowed his words and reached out for Draco, but slower this time. He wrapped his arms around him and pulled him close, placing one hand on Draco’s wet hair and letting him cry as long as he wanted to.

As Draco’s sobs softened, Sirius could finally breathe again, although the knots in his throat did not stop hurting. The boy was shaking and his still wet clothes were not helping anything, but undressing him was certainly not a good idea.

“Don’t hate me,” Draco said suddenly, his voice nothing more than a whisper. “I wanted to save it for you. I wanted you to be the first. I really did... Don’t hate me for that and don’t hate me for failing.”

Sirius shut his eyes when Draco’s arms closed tightly around him. “It’s all right...”

“It’s not... It’s weird... crazy...” Still, Draco snuggled closer to Sirius and having him this close did not feel bad enough to push him away. “I never wanted anyone but you. And now you’re here and I can’t have you. You don’t even like me.”

“Stupid...” Sirius framed Draco’s face and forced him to look up, tears streaming over his pale cheeks as if there was an endless source of water behind the grey irises. He remembered those eyes blazing with determination and mysteriously glowing like a wood in the nocturnal mist, but now the light-grey surface seemed shattered like a broken mirror. The sudden urge to touch Draco flared up in Sirius, stronger than ever before and just in Draco’s most vulnerable state.

Licking his lips, Sirius leant closer. “I do like you,” he breathed against Draco’s lips before capturing them with his mouth. Draco tensed as Sirius wrapped his arms around him, but he kept the kiss light and soft, barely touching Draco’s supple lips, although the need to deepen the touch increased with every passing second.

Sirius pulled away before he would lose all self-control. Draco’s eyes were big and innocent, full of surprise, making him look like a timid fawn. But he did not run away or push against Sirius, instead he moved closer and leant his temple against Sirius’ shoulder.

“Don’t leave me,” Draco said almost tonelessly. “Please, don’t ever leave me again...”

That was way too much responsibility for him, but Sirius would do it. After all, this was his fault. And protecting a gorgeous young man, who was unconditionally in love with him, did not seem to be a punishment at all...

“We need to get you out of...” Sirius swallowed the comment that would have sounded way too equivocal. Maybe he was overestimating his self-control when he thought this would not be a punishment.

“Out of my wet clothes,” Draco finished for him and raised his head, looking at Sirius with a crooked smile. “You must think that I’ll break as soon as you touch me... like fragile glass.”

If Sirius was honest, he would have to say that this was true. But strangely enough, Draco seemed not to be offended by the obvious pitiful expression on Sirius’ face.

“I can be strong. I know that...” Draco nodded, more to himself. “My weakness isn’t love or compassion... it’s obsession. Because of that I’m here now, disgracing myself like I never have before...”

Sirius gently cupped Draco’s cheek. “And probably you’re more honest than you have ever been in your life.”

Draco’s eyes lit up, like glowing embers. “And you said you don’t know me...” He blinked and the glow was gone, dead ashes all that was left, but the grey irises were still mesmerising, every emotion clearly visible on them. Sirius had never seen more beautiful eyes and the longer he looked into them the more he thought he really knew everything about Draco.

But he remembered Draco’s eyes when they had first met, cold as ice. He was unsure if he ought to be glad that the ice-sheet had melted now, because how could he be sure that this was because of affection and not because Draco was simply broken?

“I want to get rid of my obsession,” Draco said full of determination, but avoiding Sirius’ eyes. Sirius slowly let go of him and moved to sit next to Draco, shoulder to shoulder. Draco sighed. “But I never... I never felt like this before. So safe...”

“Then let’s turn this obsession,” Sirius wrapped his arm around Draco and pulled him against his shoulder, leaning against the shock of wet hair while Draco buried his face in the crook of Sirius’ neck, “into something real, something tangible.”

Draco’s smile felt breathtakingly good on the sensitive skin on Sirius’ throat, but it was not comparable to the heat that the delicate fingers raised when they came to lie on Sirius’ heart. He tightened his grip around Draco, unsure if he would ever be able to let go of him again.

“How...” Sirius cleared his throat, feeling a little rusty at this. “How about starting with a date?”


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